In rapidly deteriorating conditions, a properly performed head-first ladder bailout can be life saver. Here are some important fundamentals to prevent injuries during the procedure:
Place the ladder at an angle less than 75 degrees to allow for greater control and prevent slipping
Place the tip of the ladder just below the window sill so the exit area is kept open and the firefighter can keep low
Exterior teams should position ladders on upper floor windows to provide alternate exit for interior companies in the event of an emergency
Have a crew or member available to heel ladders or reposition ladders in the event the firefighter is in a window over from the ladder
Communicate and listen; know where crews are operating and adjust accordingly
When training, make sure you use rated safety line and a rated safety harness assembly on the firefighter and inspect all ropes and harnesses in use prior to training
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