Kent fire department sets training fires at Allerton
DetailsCreated on Friday, 12 October 2012 00:21 Written by Bobby Batyko Hits: 454
Training firefighters at the Allerton Apartments complex is making firefighters safer, Kent Fire Lt. David Moore said Thursday morning.
Several local fire departments, including Kent, Akron and Hudson have begun using closed sections of the Allerton Apartment complex for “live burns,” intentionally set and controlled fires used for firefighting practice.
“I’d like to thank Kent State for this incredible training opportunity,” Moore said. “It enhances safety and provides multiple opportunities to practice.”
Around 20 firefighters were involved in the practice burn, Moore said.
“It’s a blend of experienced and inexperienced firefighters,” he said. “We all learn from it.”
The bedrooms were loaded with wood and then the fires were set, Moore said.
“We’re going inside, advancing the hose line and fighting the fire. We add fuel to keep the fire going so we don’t have to constantly restart the fire,” Moore said.
Four teams, Alpha through Delta, assumed various roles throughout the day. The separate teams were responsible for tasks ranging from directly starting the fire to setting up rehab centers for firefighters on break after a shift, Moore said in a safety briefing. “Everybody is a safety officer here.”
Kent firefighter Gary Lane described the scene inside.
“You can’t see. It’s warm at the door and once you get inside it gets hot really quick,” he said. “After a few minutes, anything that’s on you begins to feel like it’s burning.”
Visibility inside was virtually nonexistent, Lane said. “Once you’re two or three feet in the door, you can’t see anything.”
The first fires were set in Building K Thursday morning. The fire crews have several days to practice before Building K is demolished, Moore said.
“We’re going to leapfrog from building to building,” he said.
The practice fires will take place in Buildings K through M from now until December, said Emily Vincent, director of university media relations at Kent State, in an email.
Todd Shaffer, Kent State construction manager, said Kent State has been working with the state of Ohio to provide this training opportunity.
“The major issue was making sure there was no asbestos,” he said.
Invitations were sent to many local fire departments to participate in the training, Moore said.
“The practice allows us to get close to the fire and feel the heat,” Moore said. “Ultimately it makes our jobs safer.”