David Rosen
A firefighter trainee works on another in simulated CPR treatment during a live exercise in buildings on the site of the future Murray Basin CSO. The structures are due to be removed and King County made the buildings available for training purposes.

SLIDESHOW: Firefighters getting ready to fight with valuable training exercise

2nd training with controlled burn cancelled due to presence of asbestos

By David Rosen and Patrick Robinson

Seattle Fire Department trainees took advantage of the buildings scheduled for demolition on the site of the future Murray CSO Facility site adjacent to Lowman Beach Park. The recruits performed destructive training inside the buildings including cutting into roofs, tearing down drywall, and simulated rescues of fire victims.

During the training a simulated smoke product was used, similar to stage smoke, to limit vision and create as realistic an atmosphere as possible.

Ed Nelson, Captain of Training for Seattle Fire Department said, "We're at the midpoint of our recruit training. Taking our newly hired firefighters off the training ground and out into the real world and giving them exposure to some of the buildings they may encounter in the city and teaching them the techniques and tactics we use to both extinguish fires, rescue citizens and then ultimately rescue and help themselves if they get in trouble."

They worked on search and rescue techniques, in a low or no visibility environment. They worked in pairs using specific search techniques finding and extracting mannequins from the structure. They did wall breaching, "something we teach them to do if they get in trouble within a building to escape from one room to another."

They worked on "forcible entry" to go through locked doors did some vertical ventilation by cutting through the roof with chain saws.

In six weeks they will be trained firefighters working in the city.

"We really appreciate the opportunity that King County has given us. This is the kind of training you can't put a value on. The county giving us access to this is huge and very gracious on their part. It's a big benefit to the citizens and obviously to these guys as individuals."

A second training that was originally scheduled for late April on the structure is most likely not going to take place since all the buildings contain asbestos, which if used during a controlled burn would represent an environmental hazard.

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