MERCED FIREFIGHTERS HOLD LIVE FIRE EXERCISE
The Merced City Fire Department held a live fire training exercise in Merced on Wednesday. Firefighters used a city-owned building in the 1800 block of Stretch Road to conduct training in “air track” or the movement of air by controlling ventilation, according to Merced City Fire Engineer Jeff Hakola. The training allows firefighters to isolate themselves in different rooms of the structure to better understand how the fire is behaving and where the fire is located in the building. According to Hakola, the Fire Department typically holds one to two live fire training exercises in structures a year, depending on availability. “Live fire training is the absolute best training we can possibly get,” said Hakola. “It’s the most realistic. The smoke is real, the heat is real. Simulated smoke does OK but any time we can do live fire it’s just a benefit for everybody in the department.” Above, firefighters prepare to enter the unoccupied structure during Wednesday’s training exercise.