Throughout their careers, firefighters probably spend more time training on imaginary fires than they do fighting real ones.
But it's that training and preparedness that can mean the difference between saving a life and losing one. And while fire departments invest in simulators and other equipment to stay up to speed, it's no substitution for training on real buildings.
That's why the Lt. Jeff Otte and engineer Brian Adcock, coordinators for the cadet program for the , jumped at the chance to use the abandoned buildings along LaGrange Road that are . Cadets, ranging in age from 16 to 21, and other Frankfort firefighters spent most of Tuesday, Sept. 4, going through the Town Center Bank building with axes, saws and sledgehammers, practicing their techniques and running through problem-solving scenarios.
Training opportunities like this are rare for firefighters, but they offer some of the best hands-on experience outside of working an actual fire scene, said Lt. Ben Hansen, who helped with the cadets. Using a real building gives the cadets lessons in building construction, as well as allowing them to get a feel for what it's like to climb a roof or knock down a wall properly, he added.
Patch was able to walk through the training with the cadets and firefighters. Watch the video in the media gallery for an inside look at what's involved.
Two Ways to Stay Connected to Frankfort Patch:
- Subscribe to our newsletters to have headlines and breaking news delivered to your inbox.
- "Like" our Facebook page for updates throughout the day.