Fire Dynamics and You – Chief Ed Mann

Where do you and your department stand on fire dynamics?

Over the last several years there has been great debate via social media about the subject of “fire dynamics,” and how we should attack fire, ventilate, and even conduct searches.

I have found most people are either vehemently opposed to the idea at one extreme or support the notion that we should forget everything we have ever been taught about fire science, ventilation, and fire attack at the other extreme.

I’m of the opinion it has never been about one extreme or the other, I believe the answer lies in the middle, not because I’m an expert by any means. However, I have taken the time to attend in person classes on the subject; programs that people like Steve Kerber, Dan Madrzykowski, Gavin Horn, and others presented and have never heard any of them say forget everything you have ever been taught.

Fortunately, there are some who have taken the time to review the science and take the training that has been offered by organizations such as Underwriter Laboratories Fire Safety Research Institute (FSRI) and have implemented real change in their departments based on the science and the research.

The question is, where do you and your department stand on fire dynamics? Have you taken the time to become educated on the subject or are you still hanging on to your beliefs that the science is wrong?

I would urge you to take the time to visit the Fire Safety Research Institute at and learn for yourself. It could very well save your life or the lives of your firefighters. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

-Ed Mann, March 2022

This article was written by Chief Ed Mann, Provident’s Director of Training & Education, who served for nearly 15 years as the Pennsylvania State Fire Commissioner.