There was a lot of action at the old Frigate Restaurant on Monday evening. The Marion Fire Department held a fire training drill at 6:30 pm, with three engine trucks, a ladder truck and an ambulance standing by. Approximately twenty fire department personnel and Emergency Medical Technicians took part. The drill lasted two hours.
Fire barrels were placed in the building and were filled with hay, which was then ignited. The ladder truck pulled up to the building and cut three holes in the roof above the area with the most fire and smoke. “We cut a hole in the location over the fire which dissipates the heat and smoke,” said Deputy Chief Joe Dayton, who organized the drill.
The fire department personnel put on their breathing apparatus and followed each other, in a line formation, into the building. “It was dark and there was smoke everywhere,” said Tom Nye, who took part in the drill.
“We follow the person in front of us,” said Dayton. The team of firefighters had two chances to rotate through the building. Portable fire extinguishers were also used. According to Daton, the breathing apparatus unit lasts approximately thirty minutes and then has to be refilled with 4500 pounds of compression.
“The drill was excellent and we were lucky to have the owner of the property allow us to come in and practice,” said Nye. “For some of the younger department members, this was their first chance to have this kind of practice.”
“We are very pleased with how the drill went,” said Dayton, who plans to interview each department member on how they thought it went and to solicit suggestions for future drill ideas.
By Joan Hartnett-Barry