Video – Forcible Entry: Outward Opening Door With Multiple Locks

This video clip demonstrates conventional forcible entry techniques for outward opening doors. At first glance this door appears to be only locked by a key in the knob lock. The halligan is set approximately 6″ above the knob but when the door is pried it becomes obvious that there are other locking devices in place. If you are prepared for, and expect auxiliary locking devices you will easily overcome them when they are encountered. Had this key in the knob lock been a panic hardware device firefighters attempting the “framing square” technique would have been defeated and had to return to conventional forcible entry.

Fire service tools have been invented and modified over the years. A few were intended for fire service application and others were borrowed from other trades. Many fire service tool adoptions and adaptions are worthwhile and useful. The ones that we (Brotherhood Instructors) disagree with are the ones that have a very limited scope of use and require extra equipment. Our goal is to keep fire ground operations simple and systematic while sticking with tactics that have proven themselves to be valid.

For those of you who like the framing square technique: hold your breath, our “how to cut a roof with a lamp shade” article will be out soon…


  • Nate Jamison says:

    Something to consider but if a key in knob lock is visible from the exterior C-side of a commercial building than panic hardware or exit control devices (part of our city code) would not be present most of the time. My point is that we require panic hardware (1 quick action) to get occupants out of the occupancy. If they add a key in knob lock or deadbolt (both are possible) it would defeat the purpose of the panic hardware (and against our code). ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE of course but just wanted to add to the point of the framing square immediately not an option when a key in knob lock is present and operating like intended. Also those that add this stuff to panic hardware don't care about codes. That's why you have to get out in your district and check on this stuff.
    Good point on expecting auxiliary locks.
    Thanks for the great training videos!

  • NDeMarse says:

    Agreed Nate, and great point.

    That code is present in many cities across the U.S. and Canada. Our point and MAJOR PROBLEM with the framing square concept of forcible entry is that it is completely a limited scope operation.

    We do not have the luxury of knowing what is going to be present on the back of a door (codes present or not). A business owner could have simply went to a hardware store and purchased a $5 slide-bolt and four sheet metal screws and completely defeated the framing square concept causing a complete waste of time.

    I know what you are saying about the key-in-the-knob lock, and completely agree with you. Thanks for the comments.

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Brotherhood Instructors Blog

We specialize in the basic fundamentals of firefighting. While we believe that hazardous materials, terrorism, emergency medical and the various rescue disciplines are essential parts of the Fire Service, we also think that the basic fundamentals of firefighting have been overlooked in recent years. We are here to help turn that trend in the other direction.

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