At second place after a grass fire with three foot high flames, the next thing that burns my bottom is the location of some rear hose connections on fire apparatus. It’s immaterial if they are used as preconnects, direct tank fills, or just as capped discharges. One wonders when the last time the person who wrote the specs actually had to access one was. You can bet the connection wasn’t as high as some are located today. I am a firm believer that if you make a firefighter’s task easier, it will be accomplished quickly, efficiently, and safely. “Well, we’ll only use that in a blue moon,” is a poor excuse for jeopardizing the safety of the troops. Remember—when climbing onto and off of a rig, it’s “one hand for me and one hand for thee.” Physically jumping off a rig with equipment in both hands is an invitation for an embarrassing injury or an early retirement.
The following photos are from a recent trade show. I acknowledge that each department runs differently and probably has specified locations that works well for it. My observations are general in nature—not knowing the users’ priorities or how these rigs are or will be set up after they are put in service. The intent is for the reader to visualize safely accessing the connection—under fireground conditions.