Proper Hose Pull

Setting up for Success: Proper Hose Pull and Stretching Techniques in Firefighting

Proper Hose Pull
Firefighting operations require precise preparation and execution to ensure a successful outcome. A crucial step in firefighting operations is the proper setup of the fire attack hose. A well-prepared hose line ensures an effective fire attack and can make the difference between a contained fire and an out-of-control fire.

Loading the Hose
The first step to a successful stretch of an attack line starts with loading the hose properly.  Each attack line should be loaded according to your department's policies, easily deployable, and done so quickly.  Check them each shift to ensure that it is done correctly.  We all like to think the other shift does a good job of loading the hose, but sometimes they may fall short.  This can be the result of an inexperienced or un-trained firefighter, a load shifting, or a late-night call in which it got loaded hastily to get back to bed.  Either way, inspect them each shift and ensure they are up to standards. 

Training cannot be stressed enough.  Train, train, train.  Have everyone on your crew stretch the attack lines from the officer down to the firefighter.  You never know what kind of situation you may have when you pull up to a fire, but you want to be ready for every scenario.  An all-hands-working fire might involve the officer and firefighters throwing a ladder for VEIS while the Driver stretches a line.  Be ready for anything.  Stretch lines in all different scenarios.  Put obstacles in place and make the crew go around them.  Do a split pull for those narrow roads between apartment complexes that have cars parked on both sides.  Do long straight pulls and do pull around corners.  Do them all.  The more you practice, the more prepared you are for any scenario which you may come up against.  You want to make sure that when the stress is on to get that line stretched fast that everyone’s autopilot kicks in.  You don’t want to be fumbling around stretching a line on a well-involved fire while a citizen is filming across the street.  Looks bad for you and the department. 

Successful Hose Placement
After you have your lines stretched you are more than halfway to setting yourself up for success, but you have a few more things to do.  Look back at your hose after you have stretched it and quickly identify anything that might hinder its advancement into the structure.  Downed limbs, lawn furniture and tree stumps can prevent advancement and prolong getting to the fire. Make sure that the area is clear of these types of things or that you have adjusted the hose line account for them.  Next is to ensure there are no potential spots in the line that can become kinked before charging the line.  You will have to take a second look after the line is charged, but you may be able to eliminate them while it is still dry.  Make sure you have the nozzle and at least 50’ at the entry point ready to go in.  This gives the nozzleman enough hose to get started with his push into the structure.  While he is moving that 50’, his crew can start humping the remaining hose into the structure.  The last thing you want to do is line your hose up with the point of entry as best as possible.  Limiting the number of corners, you pull around will help with the advancement.  If you can avoid pulling around a door frame it helps to give you and your crew the best chance at successfully advancing that line into the structure.   

Contact Us
Proper hose stretching techniques and setup of fire attack hose can greatly improve the efficiency and effectiveness of a fire attack.  The type of hose you have can also make an impact on the hose stretch.  BullDog Hose from Puck Enterprises produces a variety of lay-flat attack hoses to equip your department.  They come in all sizes and are made from durable American-made materials.  The Ultima fire attack hose is a durable double-jacketed hose constructed with staple polyester and lined with a high-tech EPDM tube.  It guarantees minimum weight with maximum durability and packability with minimal friction loss.  This all translates into, it will load easier, pull faster, have less friction loss per 100’ and will stand up to anything you throw at it.  Check out our site at for more information on BullDog Hose. 

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