The term transitional attack has been thrown around and debated for a while now. Some of the naysayers say it pushes fire, could raise temps in adjacent rooms, etc. In short they do not like it and I have even heard some call it “coward” firefighting.
Now before I get crucified I am big fan and advocate of getting inside as quick as possible, getting to the seat of the fire and putting it out. Thats why I come off the rig masked up. I am however very aware of how factors such as fire loading, heat release rate, building construction, response times, and staffing impact our ability to get in and make that interior hit.
Bottom line when applied in the right circumstances this technique works! Check out the video the temperature of the room goes from 700 to 140 degrees in about 10 seconds. I am not the greatest at math but using the simple discipline of subtraction that seems pretty good and 140 degrees is very livable temperature in adjacent rooms (to be honest it is lower due to shielding which makes it even more livable). Not only do the numbers support it, but I have seen this done in person, and done it myself so my personal experience says this works.
One thing to keep in mind is that some of the naysayers while coming from large prestigious departments, they are actually a minority when it comes to the fire service as a whole. There staffing levels ( number of companies, and members on those apparatus) is exceptional and far beyond 90% of the fire service populations capabilities. While their tactics may be sound for a 5 man engine, where the 2nd,3rd,and 4th due engines are only 1-2 mins. apart in most of the country where that is not even close to accurate. The point is they are not wrong but they are not right it is all just an opinion of perspective. A cautionary tale whenever anyone tells you anything is to determine how it applies to your department and the fires you go to. Sure a guy from FDNY is an expert at putting out a brownstone fire, but how good is he at drafting and putting out a barn full of hay?
So take a look at the video and determine for yourself if this tactic is for you or your department. I can tell you from my own experience in the departments I have worked in, it works. The studies also indicate that this tactic works.
As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE!