New York City Rescue Companies are armed with a vast assortment of tools
and equipment. In the hands of well trained and experienced Rescue firefighters,
these tools allow the Rescue to operate effectively at a wide array of fires
and emergencies. Because of the sheer number, and diverse nature of tools
and equipment carried by the Rescue Company, many refer to the Rescue Rig
as a Rolling Toolbox.
In addition to firefighting, the Rescue Company is trained and equipped
to respond to numerous types of emergencies, including:
- motor vehicle extrications
- machinery/equipment entrapments
- confined space incidents
- high angle incidents
- SCUBA operations
- subway/train emergencies
- water emergencies
- structural collapse events
- trench collapses
As part of the Tools of the Trade, we invite you to take a tour of the Rescue
rig. We intend to profile the tools and equipment used by the Rescue for
firefighting and emergency operations.
Thermal Imaging Camera
the last decade, the Thermal Imaging Camera has become an invaluable Rescue
Co. Resource. Considered such an asset, two cameras have been assigned to
the company. The MSA Argus 2 and Fire Research Corporation Lifesight Survivor
are currently carried by the Rescue.
Considered essential for firefighting operations involving commercial structures,
at least one if not both cameras are deployed for Rescue Co. operations. The
cameras have been used on numerous occasions to search for victims, pinpoint
the area of fire involvement, and assist in the location of lost and disoriented
firefighters. There have been circumstances where the camera has been requested
to locate the source of an "unknown smoke condition". The cameras have also
been useful during overhaul operations in limiting structural damage while
determining the extent of fire spread.
addition to firefighting operations, the camera has been a useful resource
for operating at a number of emergencies, including:
- Structural Collapse
- Locating water emergency victims
- Haz Mat applications ,including evaluating drums & cylinders for heating
Man In Machine Kit
Assembled several years ago by members of Rescue 2, The Man In Machine Kit
was developed to aid in operations involving entanglements and entrapments.
The Man In Machine Kit is deployed with the Rescue members performing the
incident size up. These members can then use the kit to initiate disentanglement
operations, while awaiting the transport of additional resources.
the past several years, the company has operated at various types of entrapments,
- Arm in dough press
- Arm in printing press
- Child locked in safe
- Finger stuck in car gas fill pipe
- Arm in sheet folding machine
- Child's leg in Barber's chair
- Finger caught in lock cylinder
- Foot stuck in bicycle frame
in the Kit:
- Battery Operated Sawz-all
- Wood Wedges
- Soap Solution
- Pry bars
- Saline Solution
- Steel Wedges
- Hydraulic "clam shell" spreader
- Assorted Hand Tools (screw drivers, wrenches, pliers, hammers, etc...)
Air Source Cart (ASC) is a lightweight, portable source of continuous compressed
air. The ASC may be deployed to provide an uninterrupted supply of breathing
air or a continuous air supply for pneumatic tool operation. The ASC is designed
to carry two air cylinders. Each cylinder is connected to a manifold by way
of a three-way diverter valve. As a cylinder is depleted, an alarm sounds
signaling the need to re-direct the diverter valve to allow the second cylinder
to become the supply cylinder. The nearly empty cylinder is then replaced
The ASC is ideal for "surface supply operations" such as confined space
incidents, Haz-Mat incidents as well as SCUBA incidents. The ASC has been
deployed at a number of confined space incidents the company has responded
to, including several incidents below decks aboard ships. Recently, the ASC
was set up for a fire in a subway tunnel.
Rescue carries a wide variety of pneumatic tool including air Bags (low & high
pressure); air chisels, air struts; whizzer saws; drills; reciprocating saws;
and impact wrenches. The ASC is well suited to provide a continuous supply
of air to power these tools.
The Griphoist machine is a hand operated wire rope lifting and pulling device, designed for
heavy duty and professional work. It is versatile, portable, and multipurpose, not only for
lifting and pulling, but also for lowering, tensioning, and guying. Manufactured by Griphoist,
Inc., the two Griphoists carried by the Rescue are a valuable complement to the company's
Working Principle and Advantages
The principle of the Griphoist machine is based upon a unique arrangement of two
pair of gripjaws enclosed in a housing. These gripjaws, work like a pair of hands
alternately seizing the wire rope to pull it for lifting, tensioning, or pulling
a load, or retaining the load during lowering, or slackening.
A removable telescopic handle is connected to one of the two operating levers, according to
the direction of wire rope movement, and supplies the required leverage. Since no ratchet and
pawl system is used, any handle movement moves the load.
The wire rope moves with precision, at the slightest movement of the handle. The load is
held in any position of the operating lever. The jaws are self gripping under the action of
the load or effort. The initial pressure which causes the jaws to grip the wire rope and
engage the rope in the self gripping action is provided by powerful springs.
Two Griphoist models are carried aboard the Rescue rig. The TU-28 has a 4000 lb. capacity,
and is supplied with both 30 ft. and 60 ft. lengths of 7/16 in. wire rope. The TU-32, with its
6000 lb. capacity, is equipped with a 30 ft. length of 5/8 in. wire rope.
The Griphoists have been deployed on numerous occasions for a variety of emergencies,
- Stabilizing and moving large vehicles (cars, trucks, ships, cranes) involved
- Stabilization of loose/hanging building facades, cornices, security gates
- Separating large burning dumpsters from building areas and loading docks
- Structural Collapse emergencies
Battery Operated Reciprocating Saw
A/C powered reciprocating saws have been part of the Rescue tool inventory for a number of
years. It's only within the last 4 years or so, that the Rescue companies were assigned battery
operated reciprocating saws. Rescue 2 currently carries two 18 volt Milaukee saws and a 24 volt
DeWalt battery powered saw.
The portability associated with the battery-powered version provided an increased number of potential
applications. The company has successfully operated the battery-powered saw at the following types of
- Numerous "pin-jobs" - including a wide variety of vehicle types, to: cut posts,
windshields, seat supports, sheet metal, etc..
- Building Collapses - to: provide access, disentangle trapped victims, cut 2x4s & 4x4s
to create various types of shoring, cut re-bar to release & remove large pieces
- Fire related collapses - to assist in the freeing and removal of trapped victims
- "Odd Job" entrapments & entanglements - to assist in freeing entrapped limbs
from various pieces of industrial equipment and other types of devices.
Lyle Gun (Bridger Gun)
The .45 caliber line gun, has been a part Rescue 2's arsenal since
the company's inception. As such, its image in part symbolizes the
company, and has become part its logo's and patches. Having its origins
in the nautical arena, the line gun is used to shoot a projectile with a
service cord attached to it. The small diameter service cord is connected
to a more substantial life saving rope. Once those in peril receive the
service line, they can hoist the life saving rope to their position.
Then of course, the life saving rope would be used on one manner or another
to assist the victims.
After placing the projectile in the bore of the gun, the coil of cord is
placed into the canister. The end of the cord is then attached to the
projectile with three half hitches. Just prior to firing, the .45 cal. Blank
cartridge is loaded. After making appropriate allowance for wind, the gun is
held at about a 35-degree angle, and fired.
The Lyle Gun was used by the company, as part of an operation to secure a
Hospital chimney that had broken loose. This approximately 20-story structure
separated from the building proper. The cord was shot to an adjacent roof from
a water tower platform located about 15 stories above grade. The cord was
married up with heavier line. The heavier line was then used to hoist cables
into place to guy the chimney.
The Lyle Gun was once used to subdue a vicious dog, which had attacked and
continued to menace a young child. The ill-tempered animal had the child trapped
and was holding rescuers at bay. A Rescue 2 member was able to remove the dog
from the equation by stunning it with the gun's brass projectile.