Huntley Firefighter Takes Top Individual Category for Firefighter Combat Challenge in Sioux Center, Iowa

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FIREFIGHTER CHALLENGE: Eric Rose, Huntley Fire Protection District, 1st Place time 1:28.47 (center); Richard Estes, Irving, TX Fire, 2nd Place time 1:29.97 (right); and Nate Skewes, Waukegan Fire, 3rd Place time 1:32.52 (left).
FIREFIGHTER CHALLENGE: Eric Rose, Huntley Fire Protection District, 1st Place time 1:28.47 (center); Richard Estes, Irving, TX Fire, 2nd Place time 1:29.97 (right); and Nate Skewes, Waukegan Fire, 3rd Place time 1:32.52 (left).

A Huntley Fire Protection District firefighter took the top position with the fastest time (1:28.47) in the Male (Open) Individual Category for the Firefighter Combat Challenge in Sioux City, Iowa. The event was held September 2-3, 2022.

The Firefighter Combat Challenge is a physically demanding 5-event competitive physical composite event for firefighters that includes …

a stair climb with a high-rise pack event,

a hose hoist event,

a forcible entry event,

a hose advance event, and

a victim rescue event.

Huntley FPD firefighter Eric Rose competing with the best time in the Firefighter Combat Challenge in Sioux Center, Iowa September 2022 (SOURCE: Huntley Fire Combat Challenge Team) …

Huntley Fire Combat Challenge Team (SOURCE: Huntley Fire Combat Challenge Team)
Huntley Fire Combat Challenge Team (SOURCE: Huntley Fire Combat Challenge Team).

Competitions occur year-round in cities around the world. Firefighters participate by competing for the fastest time. The primary purpose for the Firefighter Combat Challenge is to promote physical fitness, which an essential part of firefighting.

Only 15 firefighters completed the Firefighter Challenge in less than 2:00 minutes at Sioux Center in 2022. The world record for the individual open category is 1:14.76 set by Ian Van Reenen (Oakville Fire Team Levitt-Safety) in 2017 in Louisville, Kentucky. The world record for the female category is 1:48.41 set by Juliet Draper (Colorado Springs Fire Department) in 2016 in Tyler, Texas (SOURCE: firefighterchallenge.com)

Top 3 Competitors in the Individual Male Category in Sioux Center 2022

1st Place: Eric Rose, Huntley Fire Protection District, time 1:28.47

2nd Place: Richard Estes, Irving, TX Fire, time 1:29.97

3rd Place: Nate Skewes, Waukegan Fire, time 1:32.52

Sioux Center, Iowa is located about 40 miles northeast of Sioux City, Iowa.




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Event 1: Stair Climb with High Rise Pack

The first Firefighter Combat Challenge event is the stair climb. A 42 LB. hose is carried up six flights of stairs. This activity replicates a five-story building where water is needed at the top of the stairs. The 42 LB. hose is a standard 100-foot., 1.75 in. diameter hose. The stairwell consists of six sets of stairs, each with ten steps. The firefighter must carry the hose up the stairs and place it in a container box on the top story of the stairwell. The hose may not touch the ground at any point before the firefighter places it in the container box. Once the hose is in the box, the firefighter proceeds to the second event, then descends the stairs, touching each tread and holding on to both handrails on each side of the stairway. Upon reaching the floor, the firefighter goes onto the third event. Their time is continued and any penalties are added to the final time. Penalties include not touching every step or failure to hold onto the hand rails, which results in a 2-second time addition to their final time per occurrence. The firefighter may also be disqualified if at any time the hose comes off or slides out of the container at the top of the stairway.

Event 2: Hose Hoist

The second event is the Hose Hoist. Using a hand-over-hand motion, the competitor must pull up a 42 LB hose roll and place it into the box on the top of the 5-story Tower. The 42 LB. prop is a donut roll of large diameter hose (plus 7 LB of rope). Time continues from the previous Event 1. Loss of control (i.e., allowing the donut to fall more than one story), will result in disqualification.




Event 3: Forcible Entry

The third event is the forcible entry challenge, which simulates a firefighter breaking down a door or wall to enter a burning building. The forcible entry simulator used during the Firefighter Combat Challenge is called the KEISER FORCE Machine (Keiser is a fitness equipment manufacturer). In this event, the firefighter stands over a 160 LB. beam. Competitors must slam a 9.5 LB shot mallet into the end of the beam until the beam moves five feet. The firefighter must keep both hands below a tape-marked line on the mallet, and only contact the beam with the head of the mallet. This tape marked line is 1 ft. down from the head of the mallet. The upper edge of the beam is covered with a pressure-sensitive tape that makes contacts other than by the head of the mallet visible. The firefighter receives a warning for the first handle strike. Any hit by the handle afterwards adds five seconds to the final time. Pushing, and raking of the beam is not allowed and is grounds for disqualification. At the first hit, time continues from the Event 2. The event is complete once the competitor places the mallet on a 4×3-foot mat at the end of the 5-foot distance. Any part of the mallet must be placed on the mat before the firefighter goes to Event 4.

Event 4: Hose Advance

The fourth event is the hose advance, which simulates a firefighters rapidly advancing a line from a fire engine to a fire nearby. The competitor sprints 140 feet and picks up a 1.75 in. diameter charged hose line, sprints five more feet with the hose, then drags it an additional 75 feet. Once the competitor reaches the 75-foot line and advances through swinging doors, the competitor opens the hose nozzle, and directs the water stream to a small target. After hitting the target, the competitor must close the nozzle and drop the hose, which completes Event 4. The hose nozzle may only be opened only after the nozzle opens the swinging doors, if the nozzle is opened earlier a 2-second penalty is added to the final time. If the competitor does not close the nozzle, they must come back close the nozzle before continuing to Event 5.

Event 5: Victim Rescue

The fifth and final event is the victim rescue, which simulates a firefighter removing a victim from a fire as quickly as possible to save the victim from injury. A 175 LB. mannequin must be picked up from the ground, grabbed from behind, and dragged backwards 100 feet. The competitor must drag it backwards at all points of time. The competitor must grab the mannequin from behind with their arms beneath the mannequins arms and around the mannequin’s chest. Time ends once the 175 pound mannequin and the competitor passes the line marking a 100 foot distance. Event 5 ends the competition for the Firefighter Combat Challenge course, and time is stopped.




FIREFIGHTER CHALLENGE: Eric Rose, Huntley Fire Protection District, 1st Place time 1:28.47 (center); Richard Estes, Irving, TX Fire, 2nd Place time 1:29.97 (right); and Nate Skewes, Waukegan Fire, 3rd Place time 1:32.52 (left)
FIREFIGHTER CHALLENGE: Eric Rose, Huntley Fire Protection District, 1st Place time 1:28.47 (center); Richard Estes, Irving, TX Fire, 2nd Place time 1:29.97 (right); and Nate Skewes, Waukegan Fire, 3rd Place time 1:32.52 (left).
FIREFIGHTER CHALLENGE: Eric Rose, Huntley Fire Protection District, 1st Place time 1:28.47 in Sioux Center, Iowa in September 2022 (Huntley Fire Combat Challenge Team)
FIREFIGHTER CHALLENGE: Eric Rose, Huntley Fire Protection District, 1st Place time 1:28.47 in Sioux Center, Iowa in September 2022 (Huntley Fire Combat Challenge Team).




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