Search and rescue teams fan out in the Town Hall
GOSHEN - Firefighters from Granby, Hadley, Hatfield and Worthington took part in training offered by Hampshire County Fire Defense (HCFD). Classroom work began at the Goshen fireshouse in the morning then moved to the Goshen Town Hall for an afternoon practical session. Regardless of how small a structure fire may look upon arrival, the fire department must always conduct a thorough search of the building. In the photo below, Lt. Rich Stefanowicz, (South Hadley Fire District Two member and HCFD Trainer) instructs training participants on how to conduct a primary search.
During a primary search, rescuers always use the buddy system – working in teams of 2 or more. This allows the team to quickly and safely conduct a search while maintaining their own safety. Note how the firefighter in the background is holding onto the turnout gear of the lead rescuer in the picture below. The lead rescuer stays in constant contact with the wall of the room being searched which, in turn, provides the rest of the search team with a reference point.
Under practice conditions, the firefighters’ hoods are used as blindfolds to replicate real life conditions of a burning structure. Working blindfolded forces a firefighter to use their other senses to complete a task that would otherwise be easy to accomplish.
(February 24, 2007)