Sean Fuller stood back to back to back with a fellow Tri-County Career Center and High School Fire/EMS student Skilahr Robinette as they held on to a large water hose. Gallons of water streamed from the nozzle, forcing Fuller into Robinette to keep her steady.
“It was exhilarating. It’s a lot of fun,” said Fuller, 17, with water dripping from his firefighting gear. The faceshield like it’d been through a carwash.
Students from Steven Green’s Fire/EMS program participated in a water hose exercise on April 28 with help from the Nelsonville Fire Department. At any given moment, students practiced on several different nozzle types on three different lines.
Green explained that the various nozzles are used for different fire fighting situations. He said the ground monitor nozzle could be used on a wide setting to help protect firefighters or could be used to shoot long bursts between two buildings.
Students practiced a technique called a Keenan loop where, if only one firefighter is available to operate a hose line, they will wrap the line under itself and sit on the end, similar to how a toddler might sit on the floor. This technique would allow the firefighter to stay in place over a long period of time.
Lines are made up of rubber and double-lined cotton jacket and are able to handle various psi loads. When in operation, hoses can weigh hundreds of pounds.
In one particular demonstration, the students all retreated to a safe distance as one line was intentionally charged to simulate a burst line. The line went into action, whipping back and forth like a broken sprinkler on steroids.
In the fall, seniors experience a live burn scenario by visiting a site in Wellston and participating in (safe) IDLH — Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health — exercises.
“We train like our life depends on it because it does,” Green said. “Everything we do in the fire service, we train the same way we would operate on the fire scene. We wanna be prepared as if we’ve been there and done that before.”