Cars are a lot
tougher to cut through than they used to be.
Dunedin firefighters found that out during a training
exercise at yesterday at the Carisbrook site.
Crash scenes were simulated yesterday, with fire officers
posing as crash victims. Officers then used rescue equipment
to cut the victims from the wreckage, a skill many of the
officers do not get a lot of time practising.
''Some of our personnel are in roles where they will rarely
get the opportunity to use the rescue tenders,'' Willowbank
Station Officer Mark Leonard said.
''It's great be able to practise in a controlled environment,
and provide them with direct feedback.''
The days begin with a lecture, where they learn to deal with
the changes in modern car technology.
''Cars these days are a lot more reinforced, especially on
the sides, making them far harder to cut through,'' Station
Officer Mark Townsend said.
''They are also equipped with airbags, which can be a real
hazard for us.''
The exercises, which are run annually, will continue until
next Monday, giving all of Dunedin's 170 fire officers a
chance to practise their skills.
''This is by far the most effective way for us to practise
without actually doing it,'' Mr Leonard said.
-by Leni Ma'Ia'I