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Jacksonville Fire Dept. Trains for Increased Fire Danger

The Jacksonville Fire Department is preparing for increased fire danger this summer by training to extinguish propane gas flames.
JACKSONVILLE- The Jacksonville Fire Department is preparing for increased fire danger this summer by training to extinguish propane gas flames.

More and more people are turning on the grill and firing up the BBQ, but if smokers and deep fryers aren't used properly, that's when the fire department says accidents happen.

Jacksonville firefighters are getting ready for real world situations through simulation exercise using a propane tank that shoots flames 25-30 feet into the air. The goal is to get close enough to it without getting hurt and cutting off the gas supply. Cpt. David Jones say they practice until perfect. "They going up to a the gas tank or broken line and extinguishing the fire by cutting off the knob to mitigate the incident."

Firefighter Danny Akines says it's invaluable experience, especially since the department is seeing a increase in these types of situations now that people are dusting off the grills for the summer. Akines says the more realistic the training, the better. "Any type of training is just something we get to add to our database to make us more prepared for these instances."

Cpt. Jones says the goal is to figure out how to work together as a team, overcome any problem areas, and make sure there are no mistakes. "It's very important that we learn how to get up to the fire as closely as we can as safely as we can to turn off the values to cut the power."

Akines says training exercise are all about learning to trust each other and improve teamwork. "If we're not working together as a team, that just makes things more dangerous for everyone." Akines says they do this to make sure they can keep the public safe.

The Jacksonville Fire Department is also simulating house and apartment fires next week to keep their skills sharp. The Arkansas Fire Training Academy provided the trailer with the gas tank feeding fuel to the training props used in the propane drills. The only cost associated with the fire department is the cost for the actual fuel used in the training.
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