Smoke pours from the burn building during a Thursday night practice for the Fort St. James Volunteer Fire Department.

Fort fire dept. leads by example

The Fort volunteer fire department has the only practice burn building of its kind north of Kamloops, so our local department not only gets to practice with good facilities, but also gets to train other departments.

If you build it they will come.

Fire departments from as far away as Fort Nelson come to the Fort to train.

The Fort volunteer fire department has the only practice burn building of its kind north of Kamloops, so our local department not only gets to practice with good facilities, but also gets to train other departments.

So far, John Bennison, a lieutenant with the Fort St. James fire department, estimates about 40 firefighting students have received training on the structure, for the British Columbia Justice Institute (BCJI), which provides emergency services certifications and training. The training locally is offered via the College of New Caledonia, but towards BCJI programs.

While other departments in northern B.C. offer training on strictly metal structures, this is one of the only cement burn structures around. The different structures provide opportunities for firefighters to experience how fire acts within various types of structures.

The local fire department trains around once a month in the cement burn building, depending on what type of fire exercises they are doing at the time.

 

The local volunteer fire department meets for about two hours of training every Thursday night.