Sicamous firefighters conducted a training exercise in a Main Street building slated for demolition on April 6. (Rob Ward/Facebook)

Sicamous firefighters train in Main Street house ready for demolition

Smoke machines used to give firefighters practice navigating burning buildings

The smoke billowing out of the windows was fake but the skills Sicamous firefighters learned were real in a Tuesday, April 6 training exercise on Main Street.

Firefighters trained in one of the houses slated for demolition in order to accommodate the new medical centre which will be built on the lot. Fire Chief Brett Ogino said machines were used to generate smoke allowing firefighters to practise searching the inside of a burning building.

Ogino said the building was well suited to the fire department’s training exercise as it provided smoky upstairs and basement environments for the firefighters to navigate. He said the firefighters searched for a dummy meant to simulate an incapacitated person and a fellow firefighter pretending to be lost inside the structure.

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The fire chief said after a long winter, training exercises like the one the department did on April 6 are a good opportunity to shake off the rust and get the firefighters, particularly new recruits, some experience. It also provided an opportunity to test out gear like thermal imaging cameras, which are useful in the smoke-filled environment.

Ogino said similar training was done using the house next door. Both houses are destined for demolition.

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