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Structure Fire Ventilation. Making firefighting easier. Ventilation Basics. Why should you ventilate? When should you ventilate? How should you ventilate? Skills basics. Why should you ventilate. There are only three reasons to ventilate.

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structure fire ventilation

Structure Fire Ventilation

Making firefighting easier.

ventilation basics
Ventilation Basics
  • Why should you ventilate?
  • When should you ventilate?
  • How should you ventilate?
  • Skills basics
why should you ventilate
Why should you ventilate
  • There are only three reasons to ventilate.
    • Increase survivability of occupants until rescue can be made
    • Keep the fire from moving
    • Ease heat and smoke pressure on the fire attack team (increase tenability).
when should you ventilate
When should you ventilate?
  • To keep the fire in check ventilate as soon as you can. Keep in mind that this will increase fire intensity and should not happen too soon before attack.
  • For rescue ventilate the room of origin as soon as practical with the same cautions as above.
  • For fire attack ventilate just prior to the attack line entering the building.
how to ventilate
How to ventilate
  • Ventilation can be accomplished vertically or horizontally.
  • Vertical ventilation is going to the roof and cutting a hole. (backdraft)
  • Horizontal ventilation has 3 different ways to be done
    • Natural
    • Positive Pressure
    • Negative Pressure
skills basics hole cutting
Skills Basics – Hole Cutting
  • For vertical ventilation you must go to the roof and cut a whole hole.
  • Before getting on the room make sure that you sound the roof (hit it hard with a tool to make sure it isn’t burned away)
  • Once on the roof stay away from power lines and cut the hole as close to the fire as possible.
  • The whole hole should be 4 foot by 4 foot and you should not cut the structural members under the decking.
  • NEVER NEVER NEVER direct water into a ventilation hole…. This pushes fire on the attack team!!
skills basics positive pressure
Skills Basics – Positive Pressure
  • After selecting where you are placing fan break windows in the fire room or near the fire room BEFORE YOU START THE FAN
  • Once the windows are broken start the fan and make sure that you have a good seal.
  • Only use PPV when attack teams are already ready to go
skills basics breaking glass
Skills Basics – Breaking Glass


  • Smacking it is not how you do it, although it may seem that way.
  • Use a tool not your hand or center punch.
  • Keep the tool at an angle with your hands above the head of the tool so glass won’t slide down to your hands.


hot hands on training
HOT - Hands on Training
  • Vent fan placement
  • Glass breaking
  • Cutting