The vacant multi-housing building at 317 Evans and Third Street was used this past week for firefighter emergency training. The structure owner, Leigh Williams (who is also a volunteer firefighter, and attended the training) offered the use of the building. It will be torn down in the coming weeks to make way for new affordable housing units. Signs were put up on the street to give local residents warning of the operation, but many were shocked and curious to see all the fire trucks parked on the street, and firefighters emerging, fully outfitted in their bucker gear – uniforms, boots, helmets, masks and 35 pound backpack.
Rob Stumpf, Deputy Chief Operations, Lyons Fire Protection District, described the training:
Our crews have been using the acquired structure as an impromptu training facility thanks to Leigh Williams donating its use to the Fire District. Starting last Friday, July 14, on duty personnel and volunteers have been coming in to participate in exercises that simulate our response to a fire in a residential environment.”
We simulate radio traffic, deployment of fire hose, connecting to a hydrant, searching for occupants, and extinguishing the fire. While there was no ‘real’ fire used, we are able to simulate the conditions using ‘fake’ smoke like the kind you would find in a haunted house or nightclub to mimic limited visibility, and we mark the location of the fire with red strobe lights.
Crews get practice stretching hoselines into unfamiliar buildings and dozens of other relevant skills.
We have also used the building for firefighter survival skills training and Rapid Intervention, which is essentially rescuing one of our own if they were to get lost or injured in a building on fire.
Over the weekend, crews were cutting the roof to simulate ventilation tactics, and breaching and breaking through windows, doors, and walls.
The use of acquired structures is some of the most realistic training we can perform and is invaluable to our staff.
ALL PHOTOGRAPHS provided by the Lyons Fire Protection District / Rob Stumpf / Leigh Williams. All rights Copyright protected 2023. Please contact the photographers or the Lyons Recorder if you wish to use, publish or for commercial use.