Last week, County 10 shared a few updates to let you know that the Mid-Winter Fire School was happening, and Riverton could expect to be busier than usual with a few hundred extra folks in town.
Aside from snapping some photos of firefighters training this past weekend, we wanted to share a little more background with those who might not know what Mid-Winter Fire School is all about. County 10 caught up with Riverton Fire Chief Henri DeClercq, who shared a few details.
“Mid-Winter Fire School has been held in Riverton since 1978,” Henri noted. “From what I understand, it had originally rotated to different areas throughout the state prior to coming to Riverton.”
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The majority of attendees are volunteer firefighters from across Wyoming. Career and industrial (i.e., refinery and gas plant) firefighters, as well as search and rescue teams, law enforcement, and emergency medical responders from Wyoming and neighboring states, also attend.
From 8:00 am Saturday until about noon Sunday, participants are attending numerous classes and doing hands-on training for certifications and to hone their skills. “Some of the classes are designed to be prerequisites for other classes that can be taken at later times,” Henri explained.
“Basic and Advanced auto extrication (hands-on training on dismantling automobiles), Basic SCBAs (Classroom and hands-on familiarization with Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (air packs)), Basic and Advanced pump operations (Classroom and hands-on pumping water from apparatus), Fire behavior (Classroom science behind fire behavior and suppression), Gas detection (using monitors to detect hazardous atmospheres), Hazardous Materials Operations, Live Fire (hands-on firefighting evolutions), Ropes and Rigging (hands-on rescue training), Off-road driving (hands-on driving time to practice in off-road situations), and numerous other leadership, command, and decision making classes.”
Firefighters will hopefully take the skills learned to their home departments to utilize in the field and share with their colleagues.