SC firefighters train in week long real life scenarios in Columbia


LEXINGTON, SC ( WACH) --- Firefighters are spending this week doing what they're known for: running toward danger.

There are about one thousand firefighters taking part in this training and more than 20 were at the Lexington County Fire Training Facility.

James Crawford is the Assistant Fire Chief for Midway Fire Rescue. He’s teaching both rookies and seasoned firemen skills that can help save the lives of fellow firefighters.

“If you’re at a structure fire and a firefighter goes down you have to be ready to go in a moments notice to be able to go and perform these rescues,” Crawford said. “To actually physically remove a 200 to 300-pound firefighter with all of the gear on, dragging them through the building in a smoke environment where they can see is very very difficult.”

When going into these structures firefighters could face temperatures of more than 1400 degrees, so remaining in shape and hydrated could make a world of difference in the rescue, making their jobs even more critical when battling the blaze.

Firefighters learn to carry their weight, the weight of the person they're rescuing plus an additional 60 pounds of equipment. They also have to look for any weaken floors, monitor heat from the blaze and consume enough air for themselves.

“On the fire ground, there’s nobody else available to rescue firefighters but firefighters,” Crawford said. “So there’s a lot of things you need to be thinking about including the rescue itself.”

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