As temperatures soared past 90 degrees over the Mid-Atlantic region Thursday, fire fighters took part in a National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) safety and deployment study to determine the effects of crew size and response time in high rise structure fires. Results of a similar study conducted for residential structure fires were released in 2010.

Fire Fighters across the Washington, DC metro area, including Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax County, Howard County, Loudoun County and Prince William County, gathered in Crystal City, Virginia, for the experiments.  The excercises have taken place throughout June and will continue into July.

One of the fire fighters who participated in Thursday’s exercise said it was a rare opportunity for important data to be collected and for fire fighters from different departments to work together.
The NIST study is being conducted by a broad coalition in the scientific, fire fighting and public safety communities, including the IAFF.

Fire fighters at Thursday’s exercise say the odds are against you when working with only a three-person crew.

Results from the high rise experiments are expected to be released in spring 2013.