Chief Ray Altman, Boynton Beach, FL

Special ‘Ops’ Blade Testimonial – Boynton Beach, FL Chief Ray Altman – August 2007

In early August, A Battalion worked a structure fire during which a garage mechanism failed due to the heat. As a result, the door came down and could not be opened. Fortunately, our fire attack team was on top of the situation. No one was in the garage when the door came down. Attempts to breach the door were complicated due to the hurricane-rated reinforcements. Eventually, an entry point was made and the garage was overhauled. There were a few lessons learned from this incident. First, a “V” pattern cut would have saved time. Secondly, the saw blades we are currently using on the K-12 saws needed to be reviewed for efficiency. On Wednesday, August 26, C Battalion firefighters Ryan Flattery, Chris Lemieux and Lt. Mike Fitzpatrick built a reusable garage door prop. The quality of the prop is top notch and reusable. A local vendor offered us a new diamond-cut saw blade to try out. The blade called the EXTRACTOR performed well by breaching the door in just seconds. The vendor claimed the blade could cut almost anything. So, being a firefighter, I brought him anything and everything that I could find: an air compressor head, a high-strength-steel I-beam and a 4″ x 16″ concrete block. The results of the test were quite dramatic and we learned a great deal from it. The current blades we are using are not meant to cut I-beams. The EXTRACTOR Rescue Blade cut the beam very efficiently. Our current blade cut the concrete block in 1 minute and 50 seconds. The EXTRACTOR Blade cut through the block in just 12 seconds. Chief Carter has the blades on all the departments saws. ~Division Chief Ray Altman Update: Boynton Beach Fire Rescue now has The EXTRACTOR Rescue Bladeon all rescue saws thanks to Chief Ray Carter & Division Chief Ray Altman.