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FIRE: Shovels

Water is not always available to put out a fire. What to do? Grab a shovel.

Three reasons Firefighters use Shovels:

  1. Smother Flames. When flames are still small or low to the ground, simply throwing dirt on them is often enough to smother the fire. Take large scoops of dirt and aim them at the base of the flame.

  2. Cut a Fireline. A fireline or firebreak is a gap in vegetation or other combustible material that acts as a barrier to slow or stop the progress of a bushfire or wildfire. A firebreak may occur naturally where there is a lack of vegetation or “fuel”, such as a river, lake or canyon. Firebreaks may also be man-made. Using a pickaxe or a folding shovel at a 90-degree angle makes quick use of dry vegetation that can be scraped away and will no longer be fuel for the fire.

  3. Hack Away Dry Brush. When there is a lot of dry brush in an area, flying sparks can jump and ignite other areas which is dangerous because you could become trapped. Hacking away this loose, dry brush will keep it from reaching out and catching sparks.


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