The Aerial Apparatus Operations class was designed after a need was observed though the many departments I have instructed over the course of my career. Aerial apparatus represents a large investment and yet most of the departments that have aerial apparatus, of any kind, under utilize them and many off these departments really do not understand their proper use at all. Go to a firehouse and see the aerial apparatus parked behind two other apparatus and the realization sets in that this department has little or no understanding about aerial apparatus operations, positioning and placement.
The Aerial Apparatus Operations class is 8 hours of indoor classroom training contained in a power point presentation.
The class it self is broken up into 5 segments. Aerial ladders: light, medium and heavy duty is segment one. In this segment we discuss the operational differences and limitations that occur between light duty (200lb. Tip load) vs. heavy duty (750lb. Tip load). Using light duty aerials beyond their limitations can cause catastrophic failures. Aerial ladder and tower ladder failures have occurred and continue to occur several times each year. Segments 2 & 3 discuss these aerial ladder and tower ladder failures and the testing that needs to take place annually to reduce these ladder failures. Segments 4 & 5 discuss the proper positioning, placement and operations of aerial ladders and tower ladders.
This presentation is intended for firefighters, apparatus operators, training officers, line officers, maintenance personnel and chief officers that are expected to have an intimate knowledge of these apparatus.
The objectives for this program are to have the students recognize the differences between each aerial device. They will also acquire the knowledge to properly drive position, place and operate aerial ladders, squirts, and tower ladders at a variety of buildings and their occupancies. Students will learn how to simultaneously position and operate both aerial ladders and tower ladders on the fire ground to get the most out of each piece of equipment. Firefighters will have a profound sense of driving and scene safety when driving and operating aerial devices.
This program has been presented to the Albuquerque New Mexico Fire Dept., the New York City Fire Dept., Fort Worth Texas Fire Dept. and The Phoenix Arizona Fire Department with great success