During a matter of life and death, these quick thinking firemen grabbed what they had at hand and lifted an entire car off of a person.
They don’t teach you this kind of ingenuity in firefighter school. A five-member firefighter team, Engine 274 based out of New York, New York, are all being called heroes for their quick thinking in a delicate situation. By using two sets of hoses and an extended ladder normally used for climbing and extraction, firefighters used physics, repurposing the ladder as a lever and the hoses as a fulcrum point to lift an entire car off someone.
Check out their post below and the ingenious solution they came up with in the nick of time. Click “see more” to read their entire post.
Getting a call for a local hit and run less than a block away, although NYFD could’ve called an engine unit with the right equipment to lift a car off a person, time was of the essence and Engine 274 was seconds away.
Archimedes is often quoted saying that if you “give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.”
And that same principle played out here.
If you recall simple middle school physics you’ll remember that Work (torque) = force x distance. By increasing how long the lever is, the amount of work created on the other end increases while force exerted stays the same.
By increasing the length of the lever you are trading the distance you need to push (or pull) for a more work at the other end.
Here, all the force that’s needed is enough to lift a Honda Civic off a person.
Some simple napkin math reveals that an average person standing at the end of a 75-foot ladder closed in half ladder can theoretically exert 6,000 ft/lbs of force on the other end, more than enough to lift a car a couple of inches off the ground to drag someone out.
First aid was quickly employed shortly after and before paramedics could take over.
The trapped person is reportedly in critical condition as of the time of their posting so theoretically they saved a person’s life that day.
I tip my hat to you brave and quick thinking men of the NYFD, it’s a bit of ingenuity worth knowing that might come in hand for us regular people.