The first firefighter from Ladder 16 descends from the 21st floor to apartment 20F. This firefighter quickly realizes that additional equipment is needed and relays this information to the members above.
Perhaps lost in these heroic actions is the fact that the elevators stopped working early in the operation requiring the members to walk up the 20 flights of stairs and THEN execute multiple life saving rope rescues. The engine and ladder companies worked aggressively under punishing conditions to make their way into the apartment to gain control with failing lithium ion batteries exacerbating fire conditions.
Their efforts prevented the need for a third person to be removed via rope.
Some of our EMS personnel were staged inside the building and administered hydroxocobalamin to victims who met criteria – this further saved lives with earlier medical intervention. The command element was set up – including command presence.
Sectors were established early and were beneficial to the overall operation.
Public fire safety messages:
=Closed doors save lives
=Listen to firefighters AND dispatchers when you call 911 – often they will provide information that can save your life
=Know the type of building you reside in – there may be different actions to take depending on building type.
Overall an outstanding team effort that reiterates their training, teamwork and the winning mindset.
FIREFIGHTERS REALITY CHECK (How do our departments do?)