Survival: Structure Consumed, Rescue Made, Life Saved – and TIC Recovered

How tough are FLIR TICs?

Tough enough to withstand a fully-engulfed house fire – fully operational and ready for action.

This FLIR K2 helped firefighters navigate through a house that was burning up fast. The two residents had already escaped the flames, but an out-of-town visitor remained trapped inside. Where? The fire crew didn’t know.

So with the carpet melting in the intense heat, and the scene deteriorating around them, four firefighters rushed to the rescue. High temperatures and dangerous conditions forced two firefighters to turn back immediately. The others forged ahead through the thick, black smoke with a FLIR K2 providing the scene details needed to find the stairs and reach the second floor. 

The firefighters checked the entire floor until they found the terrified woman in a bedroom. Moments after they entered and closed the door behind them, the door caught fire, blocking their exit. The only option was to rappel down from the bedroom window. Dropping the K2 to free their hands, the firefighters set up a bailout harness and carabiner system and prepared to make their escape.

The first firefighter dove head-first from the window and hung below it while the second firefighter moved the woman into position. Just after he helped her climb out into his partner’s arms, the second firefighter dove out — and the room exploded in flames. As a fire truck came and lifted the trio to safety, the fire engulfed the room, the house, and presumably, the FLIR K2.

It took another 30 minutes to get the fire under control, but there were no firefighter injuries and the residents and guest were safe. Then much later, during the overhaul, fire crews made a surprising discovery. Hidden in the rubble was the dropped K2. It was wet and charred and dirty — and to their complete amazement — fully functional. Once powered up, this tough TIC was ready to image scenes, measure temperatures, and help firefighters save the day once again.


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