News: Marines, firefighters train together to prepare for joint responses
SAN DIEGO – A tanker truck is driving down a steep hill and as it rounds the corner the driver loses control. The rig rolls on its side with 8,000 gallons of gasoline in its tank. The gasoline leaks onto the street. It could ignite and catch surrounding buildings and houses on fire at any moment.
Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting Marines and hazardous material teams with San Diego Fire Department and Camp Pendleton Fire Department come together to train.
Once a month, San Diego Fire Department holds training exercises and encourages other units to join. During these training exercises, a new scenario is brought up, and together, the different agencies train to work through an emergency.
“We work together to increase the size of the pool of qualified people to help,” said Russell Simon, a captain with the San Diego Fire Department. “If we’re all on the same page and can work together it allows us to deal with virtually any emergency that may arise.”
After a quick class and practical application, the Marines and firefighters put on their suits and began the training exercise. Marines and hazardous material team members from different units stabilized the rig to prevent it from moving and used a ladder to get on top of the tank. They teamed up to drill holes into the tank to remove the gasoline before the tank could be moved.
“Marines enjoy the training with the other units,” said Sgt. Jeson Coleman, hazardous material chief with ARFF and a Cleveland native. “It builds confidence in not only their skills, but the skills of the firefighters they may have to work with in an emergency.”
Marines and firefighters take preventative measures to prohibit the emergency from escalating. Using foam, designed to protect objects from catching fire, they can work to ensure a fire is not ignited or spread.
“Our mission is always to mitigate any problems happening at the time and foresee and prevent problems in the future,” said Chuck DeLao, fire engineer with the San Diego Fire Department.
By preparing for any situation, ARFF Marines and the hazardous material teams can be confident in one another’s skills and equipment. They can make certain that when working together during an incident, the mission will be accomplished safely and successfully.
Date Posted:06.22.2012 18:13
Location:SAN DIEGO, CA, US
Hometown:BRADLEY, IL, US
Hometown:CLEVELAND, OH, US
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