#141: Firehose director

I’m slightly surprised by how old fashioned some firefighting techniques are. I suppose it’s not really that surprising that people whose lives depend on well-established systems and procedures are a bit reluctant to experiment.

Take the standard firehose, for example. Given the momentum of the water flow, it can take two or three highly trained firefighters to direct it onto the target area -personnel who are therefore unavailable for other, more important tasks get used essentially as ballast.

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Today’s invention is therefore a trolley which accommodates the business end of a ground based firehose. It would incorporate wheels to help the hose get unwound and located manually. Thereafter, water from the hose would be used to fill a large tank in the base of the trolley, ensuring that it remains in place without being held by firefighters.

The top section of the trolley, holding the hose nozzle, would be free to rotate and driven by a hydraulic system powered by the supply water pressure itself. Valves in the system would be radio controlled so that a single operative, standing at a safe distance, could, by opening and closing these, reposition the hose on different targets, as necessary.

Several hoses could be directed by one firefighter in this way (In fact, in areas of high water pressure, a larger number of hoses could be operated, perhaps even being directed automatically to the hottest regions as indicated by thermal imaging cameras).

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