Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Victor Valley Fire Academy (Part 1)

If one day your car looks like this.....

and you call 911, they send a crew out that quickly extinguishes the flames. But have you ever wondered where they learned how to do what they do and do it safely? Well I found out first hand.

I was invited to attend one of the training exercises that the fire cadets perform as part of their two month training while attending the Victor Valley College Fire Technology Program. The college is located in Victorville, CA. Jim (my son-in-law) is one of the instructors at their fire academy and was in charge of the class that day. He asked me if I would like to take pictures of their activities. I said, "Let's do it!"

So I showed up with camera in hand and ready to capture the various activities. On this particular day, the 30 or so cadets were to rotate through three exercises. I think I took more than 140 pictures that day.

One exercise was to go into a dark, smoke-filled room and pull out a fallen firefighter. They had learned the technique in class previously, but now was the practical exercise part.

While one group was doing this, another group was learning how to correctly deploy a ground monitor. First they had to lay enough hose to hook up the engine to a fire hydrant that was located some 300 feet away.

Once they had two lines going from the engine to the monitor, Captain Jim regulated the water pressure at the engine panel as Captain Glenn Stewart instructed each group.

This is just part of their training so when your car looks like the one at the top of his post and you call them out, they can attack it like this:

I found that everyone takes these exercises very seriously. After all, one day their training could save lives.

In my next post, I will have some pictures that I was able to take at a night burn.

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