Fire School

A few minutes before this demo, I noticed the plastic cover under one of the fluorescent lights was warped

Before this demo, we could see that the plastic under one of the fluorescent lights was warped

Following trauma training, most of our group spent a week getting trained up as industrial fire brigade members. Training was a mix of classroom and hands-on training. We learned about PPE, SCBA, PASS, another PASS, NIMS, ARFF, and some things without abbreviated names too!

Fire in Antarctica is considered to be an RBR – Really Big Risk – for fairly obvious reasons, so this is an especially important part of training. We’ll continue with practice, training, and drills on the Ice through the summer to stay sharp. It’ll be good to get hands-on when we’re down there; there are some differences between the environments in Denver and at the South Pole that are important, and some less important differences in the fire fighting gear we have to work with.

Much of our training here centered around working in fire gear – big pants, helmets, jackets, and bottled air. The SCBA (bottled air) system requires a clean shave to seal properly, or so I was told, which means that guys who end up on the fire response team at Pole can’t keep a nice, insulating, beard. That’s one good reason that I’m aiming to be on the trauma team, but then I messed up and more-or-less won a competition to see who could last the longest on a single bottle of air…

A lecture in a room, with a pile of burning pallets.

Class in a room, with a pile of burning pallets. Hot!


About ianrrees

Nerdy guy.
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