I've decided to use my journal as an entry point for interesting fire calls I attend. Let this be the first.
Last saturday afternoon just after 4pm, North West Sydney was hit by a decent storm. There was a lot of electrical activity that passed almost directly over my house.
I had just finished covering my cars with tarps and blankets to protect from the hail when the pager was activated. "Structure alight". I put on some of my gear and headed off to the station. Have you ever noticed that people will always drive slowest when you are in a hurry.
I get to the station just as the first truck has just left, grabbed the rest of my gear from the back of the car and jumped on the second truck.
A minute later we were there. Myself and my "buddy" jump out and went straight across to the first truck, "donned" our BA (breathing aparatus) sets and headed in.
The top floor two storey house was well involved. We entered via the front door in an attempt to gain access to the fire. As we entered the roof and air conditioner collapsed onto the floor before us. So we attacked what fire we could see from just in the door.
Shortly aftwards, the second team entered from the rear of the house and they too attacked the fire from the ground floor.
After a few minutes, the fire was less out of control. We made our way up the stairs to the landing. Every room was alight. The two teams began knocking down the fire in the rooms and the roof (what was left of it). We had gotten most of the fire when my warning whistle sounded.This signifies that I have up to 5 minutes of air left (if I was at rest). So my team had to make our way back down to the BACO (Breathing Aparatus Control Operator) get all the BA equipment off replace the cylinder and have a rest. The replacement crew took over and knocked the rest of the fire out.
Once the inital threat was over the salvage began. We moved all the furniture out of the ground floor and into the garage (which was not damaged).
After everything was completed, we returned to the station at 6:30pm (approx).
We had a 15 minute break then both trucks were back on the road to help with the storm damage. This was mainly trees across roads, power lines, driveways, on houses.
Finished and back at station at about 10pm.
All in all, it was a good way to help the community.