Early this morning A majority of our active firefighting personnel along with crews from Witmer, Bird in Hand, Strasburg and Gordonville departed for the West Chester (PA) Fire Dept. Training Center to conduct live fire exercises. Crews spent the majority of the morning working on first and second floor fires and then moved to downed firefighter scenarios where the Rapid Intervention Team (RIT) needed to be activated. Following lunch break the crews teamed up using one engine and one truck and did “run ins” where the crews respond from off site just like it is a real fire. By 3pm we were heading back to Lancaster.
Live Fire Training is just that, training where actual fires are lit in a specifically built burn building allowing firefighters to experience all aspects of a real fire including the smoke, heat, flame spread, and the methods of proper extinguishment. Realistic training like this is becoming harder and harder to come by. Although Lancaster County does have a modern training center, their burn building is fueled by propane rather than the use of Class A combustibles and despite what some may say, creates a different environment than a true Class A burn. We at Lafayette recognize this and feel obligated to provide our firefighters with the best possible and most realistic training we can find as long as we are able to find it. We thank West Chester for providing this opportunity for us.