White Pine County firefighters participated in a hazardous materials training exercise March 20, funded through an emergency preparedness grant. After three days of classroom training, fire training consultant James Powell and county Fire Chief Brett Waters designed a simulation for the firefighters to navigate.
A volunteer sat on the ground next to a water truck, pretending to be incapacitated underneath an invisible plume of corrosive vapor. Seven year veteran Jenn Hollingsworth served as incident commander, ordering her firefighters into protective gear and self-contained breathing systems.
Two firefighters carried the victim more than fifty yards from the accident scene to a stretcher before Powell assessed them. Powell has over 45 years of fire service experience, including 30 years with the Carson City Fire Department, where he retired as Chief of Operations.
“I felt it went really well,” Hollingsworth said. “It’s a great opportunity brought to us by our local emergency planning committee.”
“We had a great instructor,” Waters said about Powell. “He was able to bring his knowledge from Carson City and we’re getting a lot of people to exercise their skills and refine them.”
Funding for the exercise came from the U.S. Departments of Energy and Transportation, two auditors from which observed the training, and through the State Emergency Response Commission.