Firefighter Ground Ladder Training | One Man Deployment

Magic City Truck Academy, LLC instructor William Knight teaches firefighters how to safely deploy ground ladders by themselves at the Mile High Firefighter’s Conference in Denver, CO.

This structure fire training teaches firefighters how to safely deploy ground ladders by themsleves. Proper firefighter ladder deployment results in quicker fire suppression and victim rescue. Below is the transcription of this firefighter training video:


This allows me to position in the spot where I can see and if I’m a little bit heavier on my back foot and I create this distance, this space right here, so this is working space. My chest is centered right here, so that I have control of the left and right. I also have a heel along this spur, my foot is around the backside of the spurs, see that from the back. I’ll show you when you get to do it.

If my foot is only next to it, even if I got a fat foot, this spur will walk just like that. So, my foot, the arch, has to be behind it, so that it can’t move. That spur can’t pick up. And then my shin, pushes up against the front of the ladder. I make this little sandwich with my foot and my shin, and I now have this beam, this whole beam is under my control.

From front to back control, right here. If I leave a hand high enough, I can always pull this back, always pull over my head. So as I start to raise this, and it gets away from me I pull over the top of my head, not into my chin here, not in my chest because if it’s my chest as the ladder gets linger and heavier, it’s just going to keep falling, extending the whole way. I will not be able to recover. So over the top of your head, even if it’s way out there, I can still pull over the top of my head and recover.

So again, my hips are back, my chest is centered. My forearm is about even with my eyes and my hand right here, this hand just becomes progress captured. It doesn’t really do any significant pulling, or moving. It does this and locks back down on it like a tandem prusik belay. That’s it. It’s just capturing that progress so that nothing can slip and fall.

My big pulls come from my right hand. I will reach way up, to the limit, so that my lats are tight, and so that I can use big muscles to get this thing started. All I got to do is kinda twist and lean a little bit. I don’t even have to use my lats fully right now. I’m just using my weight and I get it started and then I pull with my lats, and then my biceps. I get this big pull at least one full rung, sometimes two like that. So I got it to full extension or wherever I want it right here and I want to ease it into the wall.

Foot in the center of the bottom rung, not to one side, and then grab the rung chest high push it forward a little bit. Once you feel that weight in your hands and you’ve got control of it, you can now ease it forward and notice it pulls me forward, so I shove my weight down and back. My hips and my leg go down and back, until I can’t anymore. And that’s when I walk down one rung, and now I can ease that guy in at any angle, just about all the way till it touches, but I didn’t have to watch it. I can just feel it go in nice and smooth.