Local fire fighters sent to boot camp

FIFTY forest fire fighters from Dorrigo, Grafton, Coffs Harbour and Casino have finished a five-day fire-fighting boot camp at Corindi Beach amid fears the prolonged dry could fuel a deadly fire season.

Forestry Corporation's fire training co-ordinator Cameron Wade said it was the first of five boot camps that would be held throughout the State to ensure staff were prepared for fire season.

"Our forest fire fighters play an important role managing, preventing and fighting fires in the region's State forests and we need to be confident they are fit and able to manage the physical pressures of the fire line," Mr Wade said.

"As part of the five-day boot camp, fire fighting staff were called upon to put their skills to the test by taking part in managing the Timbertop fire west of Glenreagh.

"In addition, there was a fitness test in which staff were required to walk 3.22km in less than 30 minutes wearing an 11.3-kilogram vest to simulate the sort of strain placed on the body during fire fighting.

"We also ran a number of training scenarios ranging from extinguishing car fires to working with fire fighting aircraft and delivering first aid treatment in remote environments."



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