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Alternate exit

The exit and entry are intrinsically related but sometimes can conflict. Therefore it is often necessary to provide access to income and alternative egress raising the operating area of the fire and / or fire escapes.

Internal stairs are the preferred routes of egress, but sometimes inaccessible or inappropriate. When you have them, the fire escapes are extra outputs and can also function as a means of income for firefighters and tailpipes upper floors. Fire escapes are the second means of escape or entry to be considered because on one hand the use of the same requires fewer firefighters placing fire escapes by these, and secondly with proper maintenance, also mentioned leaks are safer. Still, if these are included in the emergency plan, such fire escapes must be thoroughly inspected regularly and must also take into account the capacity of the same. Adequate inspection usually involves more than just a visual inspection, since the structural support of the building could be or would find hidden. Most regulations do not specifically require this type of inspection, but according to Jim Dolan, the Fire Code NFPA provides the relevant authority with jurisdiction in the area means necessary in order to apply for such inspections (see NFPA 1 / UFC: 1.4.7 tests)

Moreover, this must be mentioned in the emergency plan the location and interior access to all fire escapes (for more information on plans emergenciaver NFPA 1620, Recommended Practice for Pre-Incident Bakery).

It should decide for emergency planning where aerial platform fire safely and effectively be used. This is particularly important when the occupants are housed in buildings with poor air access to the actions of firefighters or when there is limited external access. Remember that building structures that are designed to support people and land vehicles could not support the weight of aerial appliances. Similarly, hanging structures might not have enough space to allow such aerial devices operate safely and effectively. All critical elements mentioned can and should be taken into account during the pre-planning, and remember that air mechanisms generally provide powerful, they offer a more stable platform, and require fewer firefighters to lift and position the ladder fire. For these reasons, the aerial ladder is safer and better alternative to floor ladder only when it can be accommodated without problems accessing specific areas.

The emergency plan is a guide for initial assessment of the incident commander, although some factors will only be known during the same incident. It is essential to evaluate in situ the functionality of egress facilities, including the presence or need to exit routes and alternative income. A common practice in the past was that the first fire engine to arrive "take ownership of the building." This practice is among us again today because many departments "deploy their ladders on the burning building" in order to offer alternate escape exit for firefighters who are working inside the burning building.

Today it is very common for Personal Rapid Intervention (PIR) place your stairs at strategic locations around the building, but even so, whether those are placed by the PIR or other personnel present, deployment of the stairs on the building It is an essential task that should be carried out at the beginning of the operation. Place a ladder on the roof of the first floor of a building represents an alternative exit for various departments of the second floor of the same. The SOP should consider the deployment of the stairs predictable places such as the area of ​​the central window in the rear of the building. When ladders can not be placed in predetermined places, or when the SOPs do not indicate where to place them, then it is important that staff the place outside that area to communicate with the staff inside. Protect and provide safe egress routes from the burning building security is a fundamental tactic life that should provide alternative outlets for both occupants and firefighters.



By Ben Klaene & Russ Sanders, this note is adapted from the book Structural Fire Fighting 




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