PA Crews Extricate Protestors – MUST READ

Just when you thought you ran out of training ideas…Solid work by fire companies in PA.

Crews found a group of protesters, that built a barricade to block the roadway, preventing traffic flow. The barricade consisted of 2 six foot pieces of large plastic piping, filled with concrete. Inside the large pipe and concrete were 4 smaller sections of 4″ PVC pipe with a metal rod through the end of each. Each small section of PVC pipe was placed at each end of the larger pipe. 3 individuals had placed chain around their arms, inserted their arms into the 4″ PVC pipe and attached the chain to the steel bar that ran through the center of the 4″ pipe The individuals could have unhooked the chains but refused to do so.


Cribbing and rope rigging equipment were used to stabilize the pipes and prevent any movement. Crews from Citizens Hose Co and Independent Hose Co began the time consuming task of cutting open the top of the outer pipe with reciprocating saws. Once the concrete inside was exposed, crews found that the concrete had nails, rocks, pieces of metal, pry bars and crowbars all throughout. At that point, air chisels were placed into service to chisel away the concrete and expose the foreign objects inside. While chiseling the concrete away, objects scattered throughout the concrete had to be cut and cleared out of the way. Once enough concrete was cleared away, the inside ends of the 4″ PVC were visible. The ends of the 4″ pipe were cut open, giving access to where the chains were hooked to the steel bar that went through the 4″ pipe. Once crews got the chains unhooked, the individual’s arms were removed from inside the 4″ PVC pipe.

Before the extrication had begun, the operations officer had a briefing with the extrication crew to formulate a plan of action. The Ops officer also asked the protesters if there was anything inside either pipe that would be harmful to which they stated “there’s nothing hazardous in the pipes or concrete.” Knowing the situation, the Ops officer proceeded with the operation using extreme caution and operating in a safe and slow manner. Due to the objects scattered within the concrete, the plan of action had to be readdressed several times.

This post will hopefully serve an informative and educational purpose as well as a reminder for situational awareness.. This could happen in your first due.


News Report HERE.

Pass it on!

  • William A. Lamey

    Story isn’t complete, where was this at and what were these people protesting for?

    • Jon Beets

      William, look at the link at the end of the article….

  • BigWhiteDog

    Good job all. Dealing with the right to protest is one of the hazards are a free society. Glad to see that all apparently was done with professionalism and due regard for safety on the part of the reponders.

    • Desmond Robertson

      You are right and they do have a right but the law is clear that blocking a public right-away is not peaceful like the law requiters.

  • Cold

    What a waste of time. Kick the guy in the balls and he will let go of the steel rod.

  • Jay

    Is that a midget?

    • cory

      Yes that’s me

  • Scott

    This is a common tactic used by protest groups and DHS actually has a three day extrication class (Field Force Extrication) dealing with devices like these. If you want more information email me at
    Good Job to the responders involved…