Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Firefighters Perform Odd Extrication

Getz Ranch - 

Its not everyday that firefighters have to use their extrication skills but the principles remain the same. On April 9, 2014 at 8:18 am, firefighters from Fire Station 51 and Fire Station 52 were dispatched to the area of Getz Ranch Rd and DW Ranch Rd for cattle stuck in a cattle guard. E521 arrived to find a bull with 3 legs trapped in the cattle guard and beginning to get tired. Crews assessed the situation and determined the best way to remove the bull would be to attempt to use extrication tools. Permission was granted from the ranch to do what was needed to the cattle guard to free the animal.

Firefighters from E521 and B516 deployed both cutters and spreaders, initially trying to simply spread the bars apart enough for the legs to free. It quickly became evident that that was not going to be enough, so crews used cutters and began cutting each end of the bars to widen the space. Firefighters had to work quickly to free all 3 legs rapidly so the animal would not try get up partially freed.

Firefighter Kris Schmidt is seen using hydraulic cutters to remove bars from the cattle guard

Crews were able to successfully remove enough material to allow the bull to step out of the cattle guard. Personnel stood back and waited for roughly 10 minutes for the bull to climb out. Upon observation, it appears the animal will be just fine, acquiring only scrapes and some sore muscles.

Story by Lieutenant Ron Hood, Pinion Pine Fire District
Photos by Engineer Heath Markley and Firefighter Kris Schmidt, Pinion Pine Fire District

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