Lincoln County firefighters attend training session in Boothbay

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Monday, March 2, 2015 - 8:45am
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The Boothbay Fire Department recently hosted an event for firefighters at the fire station in Boothbay.

Roger Audette of Pine Point Fire Training & Consulting came to Boothbay on Jan. 21 for a training session focusing on attic and basement fires.

Boothbay Fire Chief Dick Spofford said 85 firefighters from all over Lincoln County came to participate in what he said was an important safety training session.

“It was a great class,” he said. “There's some new technology on fighting fires. It's almost going back to the old ways, kind of reversing back — trying to cool the fire down before you enter the building.

“We're always rushing in to do this and that, but things may be different on the back side that we don't see from the front.

“Firefighters are getting killed by going in and dropping down to the basement, so we really need to pay attention to to what's going on.”

According to Spofford, basement fires are difficult because it can be hard to vent them. Attic fires are problematic too.

“Most of the people who have died this year have been in attics or bedrooms above where there's no way to get out,” he said.

Spofford said the way to cool down the fire is to put a hose line through a window or door and blasting cold water in. “It can knock the temperature right down from 1,200 degrees to 600.”

He said the circumstances have to be right to do it, but it's a safer way for firefighters to enter a building.

Spofford said firefighters came for the training session from Bath, Westport, Bristol, South Bristol, Nobleboro, Topsham, Newcastle, Waldoboro, Somerville, Alna, Boothbay and Boothbay Harbor.

The flier describing the session stated: “In response to over 20 years of research new protocols have been developed to educate firefighters on a much safer approach to structure fires.”

The training session lasted for three hours, and Spofford said that aside from getting life saving lessons, it was great just getting together with fellow firefighters and talking shop.