Re-entry into a risk area
It may sometimes be necessary for breathing apparatus teams to re-enter a risk area to perform a specific task after they have withdrawn, reported to the BA entry control point and closed down their sets. Re-entry will only take place for a limited and defined period to achieve a specific task or tasks within the physiological and psychological capabilities of the BA wearer.
Re-entry can only be allowed where the incident commander is satisfied that:
- The BA team is still under the control and supervision of the BA entry control operative
- The re-entry is for a clearly defined, specific task which should not involve firefighting (other than to ensure personal protection of the BA wearers)
- The cylinder contents of all BA wearers are sufficient for the task (this does not involve fitting a fresh cylinder, which would constitute a new entry)
- The pressure gauges of all BA wearers register a pressure that provides a minimum of 15 minutes’ working duration
- The fitness and wellbeing of the BA wearers is adequate for the task to be undertaken
The BA entry control operative must record fresh details for all the BA team members involved in a re-entry procedure. This should include annotating the BA entry control board appropriately with the words ‘re-entry’ or RE. See abbreviations.
Re-entry should not take place for team members wearing extended duration BA owing to the additional weight of the extended duration BA set, the longer durations required and the additional physiological burdens involved.
In addition to duties included within BA operational procedures – all incidents, the following responsibilities apply:
Role and responsibilities of the incident commander
The incident commander will:
- Determine the requirement for the identified specific task
- Confirm that the identified task is for a limited duration
- Determine, following a suitable and sufficient assessment of risk, whether any specific task is within the physiological and psychological capabilities of BA wearers
Role and responsibilities of the BA entry control operative
The BA entry control operative will:
- Where a BA team re-enters a risk area, ensure that the cylinder contents of all BA wearers are sufficient for the specific task; in all cases, the cylinder should be at a pressure that provide a minimum of 15 minutes’ working duration
- Record fresh details for all BA team members
Role and responsibilities of the BA wearer
The BA wearer will:
- Confirm their fitness to carry out the identified task
- Receive and confirm their understanding of a briefing before deployment