Five years ago, several members of Horry County Fire Rescue decided it was time to put Horry County on the map. How would they accomplish this? By starting a Competition Team. The members started training on their own time using their own equipment and entered their first competition. The outcome was not wins, but rather a learning experience. They learned how to better prepare, how to compete, and most importantly become a team. They traveled to as many competitions as they could afford, often on their own dollar. Today, they do several fundraisers and have sponsors to help their travels. Our team competes under the title of “TEAM HORRY“.
Competing is only part of the team. The members are in top shape and try to promote physical fitness in places where physical fitness is often neglected. They are also active in their community. Throughout the year they not only visit local establishments, but when they are competing out of town they try to visit local hospitals to see children. When the team went to the World Championships at Las Vegas in 2004, they visited a local Children’s Hospital that was never visited by a Fire Department. Later that year the team was recognized by County Council and given an award.
The members of the team have changed over the years, but the purpose remains the same. Constant training and hard work has poured into this team, and the biggest reward is self-satifsfaction.
The Competition Team is made up of firefighters that compete against other departments from around the world. Horry County has hosted the Blast of the Beach Firefighter Combat Challenge since 2002. Scott Firefighter Combat Challenge brings out the best in firefighters. The team trains year-round and is proud to host the Blast of the Beach. In 2005, the local competition drew over 120 competitors from around the country. The Firefighter Combat Challenge is designed to feature physical fitness in the fire service. It is a physically and mentally grueling event worthy of the nickname “the toughest two minutes in sports”.
Each event must be performed in the order specified below.
EVENT 1 High Rise Pack Carry
The competition starts at the base of the tower. The hose pack cannot be touched before the start. The 3″ (7.62cm) hose load and cover (42 lb.; 19kg) may be carried in any manner and must be deposited into the container on the top floor. Proper placement is on or in the container, with no part of the pack touching the deck. A 2-second penalty will be assessed for this infraction. The hose load must stay on the top platform. The competitor is disqualified if the high-rise pack falls off the top of the tower. The handrails may be used in climbing the tower. Steps may be taken in multiples on the way up.
EVENT 2 Hose Hoist
A 42-lb. (19kg) donut roll of large diameter hose and 5/8″ (16mm) kern mantle rope is used for this event. The competitor is not allowed to stand on anything other than the top platform while hoisting. The evolution is complete when the roll clears the railing at the top of the tower and is placed in the container on the top floor. The donut roll must ascend; loss of control (i.e., slippage of more than one balcony) will result in disqualification. Proper placement is on or in the container with no part of the donut touching the deck. A 2-second penalty will be assessed for this infraction. The donut roll must stay on the top platform. Disqualification results with any loss of control of the donut roll, including falling off the tower, rolling down the stairs or interfering with the adjacent competitor. A fallen donut roll may not be retrieved. Descending the tower, every step must be contacted and the handrail grasped. Failure to touch each step on the descent will result in a 2-second penalty per infraction.
EVENT 3 Forcible Entry
The forcible entry evolution utilizes the Keiser Force Machine™ (a chopping simulator). Using the 9-lb. (4kg) shot mallet provided, the competitor must drive the &Mac197;160-lb. (72.5kg) steel beam a horizontal distance of 5-ft. (1.5m) Pushing, raking or hooking the beam is not allowed; only the head of the mallet is allowed to strike the beam. The handle must not come in contact with the beam at any time. The upper edge of the beam will be covered with pressure sensitive tape, making infractions visible by a mark on the tape. A 5-second penalty is assessed for each infraction after the first handle strike. Both hands must be above the tape mark on the handle (12-in. [30.5cm] from the head end) at the point of impact. A 2-second penalty is assessed for every inch or fraction of each inch that the sled is short of the end of the tray. The hammer must be placed on the designated 3’x3′ (84x84cm) mat. A 2-second penalty is assessed for this infraction.
EVENT 4 Hose Advance
The competitor must negotiate the 140’ (42.6m) slalom course without missing or knocking over any delineator; doing so will result in a 5-second penalty for each infraction. The competitor must pick up the nozzle end of the 1 _” (4.45cm) charged hose line, forward of the stripe 6’ (1.8m) from the nozzle and drag it a distance of 75-ft (22.8m). Once the nozzle penetrates the swinging doors (i.e., crosses the threshold 75-ft. away) the competitor opens the nozzle, hits the target with the water stream, shuts down the nozzle and places the nozzle on the pavement. If the nozzle is not shut before it is placed down, the competitor must go back and close it. If course staff is required to shut off the nozzle a 5-second penalty will be assessed. If the nozzle opens after hitting the ground, there is no penalty and the competitor can continue to the victim rescue.
EVENT 5 Victim Rescue
A 175-lb. (79.4kg) Simulaids, Inc., Rescue Randy® mannequin must be dragged backwards a distance of 100-ft (30.5m). Carrying the dummy is not permitted. If any competitor crosses the course delineator (i.e., goes out of lane), a 5-second penalty will be assessed. Any contact with the opposing competitor will result in disqualification. The mannequin must not be grasped by its clothing or appendages. Time stops when the competitor and victim completely cross the finish line.
The Course Marshal, at his sole discretion, may stop any competitor who in the official’s opinion creates or is in a dangerous or unsafe condition.
All competitors are personally responsible for the completion of each task. No course volunteer has the authority to instruct a competitor in the negotiation of the events on the course; only the Course Marshal can intervene or direct the actions of a competitor. In those rare situations where the event staff may have created an impediment, the options to rectify this situation may include a deduction in time to remedy the hindrance or allow another run of the course.
Firefighter Combat Challenge Penalties Summarized
• High Rise Hose Pack Placement (in box): 2 seconds
• Donut Roll Placement: 2 seconds
• Skipped Step (tower descent): 2 seconds
• Keiser Force Machine Foul: 5 seconds per mis-strike
• Failure to finish Forcible Entry: 2 seconds per inch or fraction thereof
• Hammer Placement: 2 seconds
• Knocking over or missing delineator: 5 seconds per occurrence
• Failure to Advance Hose 75-ft.: 10 seconds
• Failure to Activate Target: 10 seconds
• Out of Lane: 5 seconds per occurrence
• Failure to show
• Double false-start
• Loss of object from tower
• Skipped event
• Disrupting the competition
• Unsportsmanlike behavior
• Interference on the course
• Unauthorized personnel on the course