Rescue trainers brave the cold

The Wapakoneta Fire Department participated in a frigid, annual training session Thursday at the pond located behind the Wapakoneta Light and Power building on 251 Industrial Drive.

Fire Chief Kendall Krites said the training is important in case an ice rescue needs to be done during the cold, winter months.

“Any discipline that we’re going to try to perform in the real world we’re going to train on,” Krites said. “The technical rescues that we tried to be prepared for take a lot of practice and we do some of this training in house so that we can stay fresh on it.”

Refreshing memories on rescue tactics and techniques at the station is effective in getting firefighters into the mindset for ice rescues; however, getting onto the ice and participating in real life simulations is necessary.

“Once we start to get into the cold months we start brushing up on it,” Krites said. “But it’s imperative that we actually get out onto the ice and actually do some live rescues to hone our skills and make sure that we are prepared in case a real rescue should arise.”

Fire Captain Alan McClintock said ice training is not done on firefighters’ initial training.

“They do not receive any technical rescues as far as water rescue, ice rescue goes,” McClintock said. “So due to the fact that we do have water rescue capabilities, that just extends into the ice rescue and working on ice.”

For the full story, see the Monday, Feb. 17 edition of the Wapakoneta Daily News.