Firefighters use dry weather to train

June 20, 2008 1:46:51 PM PDT
Dry weather makes for good conditions for fire training and Firefighters in the North Bay decided not to cancel a controlled burn because of weather.

However, the good news is that there isn't a lot of wind. It makes for good conditions for fire training and preparing firefighters for the real thing.

These controlled burns are about as close to a real emergency as you can get. It's the culmination of a week long fire training academy for Marin County firefighters.

"We're trying to expose them to that so they are used to seeing live fire," says Battalion Chief Scott Alber.

Today's weather conditions would be concerning if this were an out of control wildfire, but in this case, according to firefighters, they're just right.

"It's exciting. That is why we're all here," says firefighter trainee Shane Long.

It's a spare the air day, but firefighters still got a pass from the Air Quality Management District.

"Also, the grass is so dry, we're not putting up a lot of smoke. That kind of mitigates it a little bit as well," says Battalion Chief Scott Alber.

They are burning 15 acres in strips. The trainees are divided into teams of torchers, men wielding the hoses, and mop up crews that are burying debris before it can flare up again.

"We're trying to just give them a safe understanding. They're not the best ones out there but we're trying to make them the safest out there.

Firefighters are expected to have everything wrapped up by later in the afternoon and things are going quickly with grass this dry and moisture levels we normally see in August.


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