Constant training is part of the job for Great Bend firefighters, but last month the department turned it up a notch.
On Sept. 17, training at Fire Station Two, 5956 10th St., started at 8:30 a.m. and continued into the afternoon, Battalion Chief Eugene Perkins said. It was required for every member of the department.
"We do a lot of drills on duty, but it can be limited," Perkins said. For the training day, firefighters concentrated on skills that aren’t typically needed, but could be life-saving under certain conditions.
"We had three training stations," Perkins said. The first had firefighters working out of the aerial truck.
A pumping station had them transferring water from a portable, 3,000 gallon tank, and also had them relaying water from one pumper truck to another pumper truck that would proceed to the fire. The portable tank is needed to fight fires in the country, where no hydrant is available. In relay pumping, a hydrant may be available but so far from the fire that water pressure is lost.
The third training station had them practicing a rope rescue from the top of the training tower. Firefighters practiced removing an injured person from a rooftop using ropes, harnesses and pulleys.
Training comes with the job. Fire Chief Mike Napolitano said anyone hired by the GBFD is already an Emergency Medical Technician when they come to work. Before they are allowed to go out on a truck they go through three weeks of full-time training and then they must pass state certification.