Training To Save One Of Our Own

BY: Lieutenant Angel Medina
Fairfax County Fire & Rescue Department
Station 24, Woodlawn. C-Shift

Recently, members from Station 24, Woodlawn and Station 9, Mount Vernon, C-Shift met at Station 24 to conduct training related to rescuing a downed firefighter in a hazardous environment.

The training started with a review of the Rapid Intervention Team (RIT) Rescue Pack. Each component of the RIT pack was explained along with when and how to use it. For those who do not know, a RIT is established at structure fires in which a crew from a unit is assigned to be ready to enter a fire to save any firefighters who may require rescue during the incident.

Crews then put full gear on and prepared for the practical component of the training. The scenario was a firefighter who called a mayday and needed to be rescued. Their objective was to assess the situation, force entry into the building, use either the hose or search rope (will help guide them back to safety), and locate the downed firefighter.

Firefighters had to force entry into the building using our forceable entry prop that is very realistic. Each firefighter had to place one of their protective hoods (a part of firefighter gear that covers neck, ears, hair) over their face piece so they could not see – which is usually the case in fires. They then had to locate the downed firefighter, utilize the RIT pack and remove the firefighter from the hazardous environment to safety.

Members of both stations did an outstanding job performing the assigned task. Training together like this is important as both stations frequently respond and work together on structure fires. We hope we never have to use this training in an actual fire. However, we will be ready to save one of our own if it occurs.



Training Does Not Take The Weekend Off

By: Master Technician John Wehr
Fire Station 11, Penn Daw, C-Shift

A beautiful non-July like day this past weekend saw the personnel from Fire Station 11, Penn Daw, conduct outdoor training exercises. Station 11 units took advantage of a recently closed grocery store to go over a variety of fire scenarios that may occur in a strip type shopping center.

Many facets of fire ground operations were discussed and practiced. Crews performed various engine company operations, ladder truck placement, roof operations, forcible entry and search techniques.

Training doesn’t take the weekend off. Your Fairfax County fire and rescue personnel train everyday so they are prepared for any emergency 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year.

A Beautiful Day For Roof Operations Training

By: Lieutenant Jon Stern
Fire Station 11, Penn Daw, B-Shift 

This week our station, Fire Station 11, Penn Daw, B-Shift conducted training on accessing a variety of commercial building roofs. Often times these roofs can be challenging due to an assortment of reasons. A big one, which you can see in the photos below, is some have a tall parapet wall that can be misleading when viewed from the ground. Once on top, you can see the big drop off below (approximately ten feet in this case) to the roof.

The training also serves a dual purpose of allowing our firefighters to familiarize themselves with the buildings in the area they may one day have to respond to during an emergency. For example, this particular building we trained on we now know there is a significant parapet wall and we will need to grab a small ladder to access the roof safely from the large ladder.

Knowledge gained by training before the emergency incident can save time, improve performance and potentially prevent unnecessary harm to those we serve and firefighters alike.


Recruits Train On A Vital Piece Of Equipment

Members of Recruit School 142 have spent this week learning everything there is to know about a vital piece of a firefighter’s equipment – the self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA).

On Wednesday (6/28/17), the recruits spent all day getting familiar with their SCBA via various training exercises. Watch below as the recruits go through some of the exercises. Lieutenant Ty Corbin explains what an SCBA is, what the recruits are doing and why on the video that was first broadcast live on Facebook.

Ready For Any Situation

By: Battalion Chief Keith Ludeman
Battalion 407, C-Shift

Personnel from Fire Station 16, Clifton, and Battalion Chief 407, C-Shift test a recently installed dry hydrant on Wyckland Drive in the Clifton area of Fairfax County.

A dry hydrant allows for quick access when utilizing a static water source, such as a pond, in areas of the county with no domestic water supply systems. This dry hydrant was recently installed thanks to a grant approved by the Virginia Department of Forestry.

Thanks to Captain Mohler (A-Shift) for coordinating all the necessary efforts.