Lt. Ray McCormack Discusses Acronym DICERS-VO

Lt. Ray McCormack Discusses Acronym DICERS-VO


Directed Interior Containment, Extinguishment, Rescue, and Search
Ventilation, Overhaul

DICERS lays out the interior fireground with three time sensitive components and one component that overlays all and that is a directed fire attack. Extinguishment of the fire. 
Rescue of those effected by the fire and smoke.
Search of the fire area and adjoining spaces. 
All fire operations need to contain these three distinct operational dynamics. A fire department is called to stabilize the fire scene and these component finish our time compressed fireground tasks.

The three tactical and strategic components of DICERS can be used in any order and will be accomplished utilizing the concepts of best practices. These best practices are used in conjunction with a fundamental understanding of size up and what it provides for us to combat the fire. Time compression, hoseline placement strategy, and capability based upon the fires extent and location within the structure and knowledge of how to obtain complete extinguishment. 

Extinguishment on the inside of the fire area is typically obtained using handlines. While high flow rates are vital so are interior hoseline extinguishment techniques. With proper hoseline management the interior functionality of the attack allows for complete extinguishment and the establishment of additional operational staging areas for expanded search and rescue operations. Using supporting functions such as coordinated ventilation, air restriction and nozzle discipline complete extinguishment is often quickly obtained which makes the fireground safer for all. 

Search is conducted utilizing both primary and secondary postures. These search benchmarks may or may not be attainable at all fires as quickly as we would like however search is a core fireground function and must be carried out when structural stability allows. The reason fire is not a consideration is that while primary search is often done concurrent with extinguishment secondary search is preformed post fire extinguishment so only building stability or some other hazard would interfere with completion of the secondary search. 

Rescue is a function of firefighting that can often place firefighters in positions without direct hoseline protection. Under those types of conditions firefighters must attempt to plan their move and be cognizant of methods that can assist them with completing that mission ex. VEIS or manual interior fire blocking along with entry air control provides rescuers additional safeguards and often more time.

DICERS completes the fireground mission as it relates to searching for fire, and victims, rescuing fire victim and those trapped, and complete extinguishment of the fire within the structure. Not all fires will be fought the same way however these three components are the foundational concepts of firefighting operations inside a structure. That is an unshakable paradigm.

Ventilation of the fire area must be coordinated with extinguishment and or rescue and search, it must be communicated with interior teams. Ventilation may be horizontal or vertical or a combination of both. Improper ventilation can cause unwanted fire growth.

Overhaul must be preformed at all fires. Open up along side, above, or below any fire you believe could have spread. We must be through when we overhaul, while minimizing unnecessary damage. Good overhaul allows the fire department to leave the scene stabilized and confident that the fire is out.

We now have both SLICERS and DICERS

The following is taken from the IFSFI web site

International Society of Fire Service Instructors

Sample Standard Operating Guideline

S.L.I.C.E.R.S.– Slice is a Fire Attack Mode tactic used to reduce temperatures inside a building prior to entry by firefighting personnel for extinguishment or rescue.

Door Control – The process of ensuring the entrance door providing access to the fire area is controlled and closed as much as possible after teams enter the structure. Steps must be taken to prevent the door from locking behind the entering members. By controlling the door, we are controlling the flow path of fire conditions from the high pressure of the fire area towards the low pressure area on the other side of the door. Door control also limits fire development by controlling the flow path of fresh air at the lower level of the open door towards the seat of the fire.

By: Lt. Ray McCormack-FDNY

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