Fire­fight­ers head­ing to Fire Camp in April

South Waikato News - - NEWS / HE PU¯RONGORONGO - By PET­RICE TAR­RANT

Fire sirens will fill the ears of Pu­taruru res­i­dents come April when the town hosts the Re­gion 2 Fire Camp for 2015.

Ev­ery two years the Bay of Plenty/Waikato re­gion hosts a three-day train­ing camp for ad­min­is­tra­tors, train­ers and fire­fight­ers.

Al­most 50 vol­un­teer fire­fight­ers and 20 sup­port staff will com­plete this year’s course.

‘‘In 48 hours it’s what some guys would take 5 years to learn,’’ Tau­ranga Vol­un­teer sup­port of­fi­cer Kerry Gor­don said.

The par­tic­i­pants are put through dif­fer­ent sce­nar­ios in­clud­ing mo­tor ve­hi­cle ac­ci­dents, car fires, pri­vate fire alarms and larger in­ci­dents, Gor­don said.

‘‘We’re warn­ing the town to be pre­pared for a lot of fire trucks and to stand and watch and ob­serve but don’t get in­volved.’’

Pu­taruru fire chief Nathan Ben­netto said the par­tic­i­pants will also learn about aero­plane safety and P-lab drug sce­nar­ios.

He said po­lice and St John will be a part of the week­end and there is the po­ten­tial for other groups to jump on board.

A school in Te Puke took part in the 2007 camp by film­ing the sce­nar­ios which earned them NCEA cred­its, he said.

At this stage the par­tic­i­pants are all from out of town, Ben­netto said.

‘‘We [Pu­taruru Vol­un­teer Fire Brigade] still have to re­spond to emer­gen­cies that week­end.’’

The week­end will cost around $26,000 and the sta­tion is still in the process of gain­ing spon­sor­ship, he said.

‘‘We’ve raised $8900 but we would like to get an­other $5000-$6000.

It takes about two years of prepa­ra­tion from when a camp puts their hands up to run it.

‘‘And we were crazy enough to put our hands up,’’ Ben­netto said.

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