Firehouse

JAN 2017

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Our last review The September and October 2015 Univer- sity of Extrication columns looked at these two new technologies in detail. In short, it was reported that tire deflation by means of pulling the valve stem out of the rim or cutting a valve stem with side cutters may not work any longer due to the TPM sys- tem. The large transmitter at the base of the valve stem prevents the stem from being pulled. Because it will likely be a metal valve stem, you also may not be able to cut the TPM stem with side cutters either. When it comes to run-flat tires, even if you were able to puncture their thick side- walls, they don't need air to retain their shape. Puncturing a run-flat with a Hal- ligan, for example, may get you nowhere. The tire might not flatten and the vehicle wouldn't settle onto the cribbing below. Training time So how, during a training exercise, do we train our crews on tire-deflation options when confronted with a TPM system or run-flats? The instructor can simulate that the old junker you are cutting up for train- ing has a TPM system and that the valve stems are metal by using a bright color spray paint to highlight the valve stem. To make it a "worst-case scenario," the instructor can also simulate that the vehicle has run-flat tires all around by painting the sidewall of the tires. Now your crew has to adapt and overcome in a training environ- ment to better prepare for the real world. They have encountered new technology by simulating these features on a 10- or 15-year-old car that you are going to cut up. To deal with the metal TPM valve stem challenge, the crew can explain that they would attempt to snap or break the metal valve stem in two. They could also use what is known as a ball tire air chuck with a valve stem lock-on clip. One of these units would be attached to each valve stem to allow air to escape from the tire. To deal with the run-flat tire challenge, the crew could stabilize the vehicle by coordinating a vehicle lift. One firefighter, with their back against the vehicle, grabs the fender lip and uses their legs to slightly lift the vehicle while their partner slides step chocks or cribbing underneath. The run-flat tire is not deflated, but the vehicle will still rest firmly on the cribbing below with the gentle vehicle-lift technique. n UNIVERSITY OF EXTRICATION Use of a ball tire air chuck with a valve stem lock- on clip allows the device to attach to the valve stem as it allows air to escape from the tire. Spray paint on the valve stem simulates that this old junker has TPM systems and the stems cannot be pulled or cut through. Painting the sidewall of the tire simulates a run-flat tire where even puncturing the tire will not deflate it. While one firefighter uses his legs to gently lift the vehicle up, the second firefighter slides the step chock into position under the rocker and beneath the C-pillar. For More University of Extrication Not familiar with a TPM system? See Ron's video at firehouse.com/12280303. And for additional monthly columns, visit firehouse.com/10244660. 32 l Firehouse l January 2017

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