Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Rapid Intervention Team Drill

At any working fire, you may see a number of firefighters doing multiple tasks. The typical scene to the untrained eye looks rather chaotic. However, each team of firefighters has been assigned tasks to perform. One such team is the Rapid Intervention Team or RIT. A RIT team is tasked with being ready with the necessary equipment to rescue a firefighter should he or she become disabled or trapped inside a burning building. They may be assigned duties to provide a second means of egress for the crews operating inside and to walk around the structure to familiarize themselves with other potential escape routes. But, other than that, RIT team members are to stand by ready for deployment if one of their colleagues needs them.

This past week, Hillsboro Fire and Rescue conducted RIT drills in a modular building donated to us by a local business. The structure provided a series of rooms in which trainers constructed a simulated building collapse that required the RIT team students to crawl through, under, over obstacles to locate the simulated firefighter needing rescue. They have to perform these drills with Press –n-Seal coating their face masks to simulate smoky conditions. Successfully performing these drills give firefighters an idea of what it may be like to be looking for one of their own should the unexpected happen.

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