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June 2021: Training Day Lesson Plan

Let’s do this: Structural collapse rescue, vertical ventilation, bailout maneuvers and more

June 2021.png

Welcome to FireRescue1 Training Day, providing company officers training ideas, resources and a downloadable schedule to help keep crews focused and interested on both bread-and-butter training evolutions and more varied and complex skillset development.

The June 2021 lesson plan offers training ideas focused on a fundamental fireground activity, a technical rescue operation, a vital mayday maneuver and more. Incorporate the supplied resources into weekly training, engage crews in training-focused discussions, and assign hands-on activities to keep crews busy.


The objectives of this training plan:

  • Increase knowledge and skills related to structural collapse operations, vertical ventilation, bailout maneuvers, building construction and/or wildland fire operations;
  • Raise proficiency among crewmembers, awareness of safe operations during training and real-world tactics; and
  • Encourage discussion and engagement among members.

Focus areas

Training schedule

Download the training calendar so you can print it up, tack it on the big board at the station or distribute it among crewmembers so they know what training to expect for the month.

Week 1: Technical rescue: Structural collapse

Structural collapse is one of the foundational training areas of technical rescue. Review the following articles and video, then discuss key questions with fellow crewmembers.

Training resources

Discussion topics

  • Read/watch: Overhang dangers: Maintain situational awareness while working near the collapse zone
  • After watching this video with your company, take these steps to train for operating at fire scenes where overhangs are present:
    • Practice size-up skills by driving around your district to identify buildings with overhangs; and
    • Discuss what other options are available to complete certain tasks that involve working underneath or nearby the overhang of a building.

Week 2: Fundamentals: Vertical ventilation

Vertical ventilation is a high-frequency fireground operation that all members must be comfortable completing. Review the following articles, listen to a related podcast and test your knowledge, before delving into the discussion questions and hands-on activity.

Training resources

Discussion topics

  • What are the best tools to use during vertical ventilation? Which do you prefer? Why?
  • What are the company officer’s expectations of the crew performing ventilation duties and vice versa?
  • What are the dangers of sounding the roof with your boot?
  • What are the safest areas from which to perform vertical ventilation? Discuss roof areas and other options (e.g., ladder, aerial device).
  • What does the current research say about when to perform vertical ventilation in relation to fire attack?

Hands-on activity

Week 3: Mayday: Bailout maneuvers

No firefighter wants to experience a mayday event, but all must be prepared for one. Knowledge of bailout maneuvers is a critical first step in preparation. Review the following article and videos before engaging members in an in-depth discussion of mayday techniques. Then, set aside some time to get hands-on with a bailout prop.

Training resources

Discussion topics

Review the following videos and ask yourself: What went wrong? What conditions indicate the likely need for bailout? What would you have done differently? Would you have needed a rapid-intervention crew?

Hands-on activity

Week 4: Crew choice: Building construction or wildland

Choose the topic that makes most sense for your response area, then dive into the training resources and discussion questions to help expand your knowledge of the topic.

Training resources: Building construction

Discussion topics: Building construction

After reading Know the enemy: Firefighters must understand the basics of building construction and watching the associated video:

  • Discuss what tactics could be used to combat the fire and mount a rescue; and
  • Tour the neighborhoods to see if there are any residential construction projects underway. If there are some, tour the houses being built to get a better understanding of modern construction.
  • Review Brannigan’s textbook on “Building Construction for the Fire Service.” I recommend taking a chapter a month to review the key concepts. And if your department doesn’t have this book, buy it!

Training resources: Wildland

Discussion topics: Wildland

  • Is your department prepared for a wildland-urban interface fire?
  • What tools are you using to educate members of the community about wildfire risk?
  • Do you have the proper tools and gear to manage a wildland incident?

Check the last week of every month for the next Training Day schedule and resources.