Area firefighters practice rescue techniques in office scheduled for demolition

Area firefighters practice rescue techniques at the former Olympic Property Group office before it was demolished for Safeway. - Jody Matson / Poulsbo Fire
Area firefighters practice rescue techniques at the former Olympic Property Group office before it was demolished for Safeway.
— image credit: Jody Matson / Poulsbo Fire


POULSBO — She quickly shut the door after feeling intense heat fill the corridor and seeing a dark smoke cloud roll down the hallway. Now with the victim trapped in a back office, firefighters prepare to make entry into the dark, smoke-filled building.

Poulsbo Fire and Central Kitsap Fire & Rescue firefighters trained for this and similar scenarios this weekend. Dressed in full bunker gear and breathing apparatus, firefighters dragged heavy manikins and utilized various ropes and tools to rescue a “victim.”

Firefighters could be seen cutting through the rooftop of the former Olympic Property Group’s office building on the corner of 10th Avenue and Lincoln March 2 and 3. The drill provided the opportunity to practice rescue techniques used in commercial buildings. Firefighters ascended a ladder from CKFR's aerial truck to practice roof ventilation and search and rescue techniques.

“Use of this building provided a great opportunity to practice search and rescue techniques used in commercial buildings,” said Poulsbo Battalion Chief Training Officer Jim Gillard.

The building was scheduled to begin demolition March 5.

“We appreciate the cooperative effort of Deacon Construction and Safeway Corporation in allowing the use of the building,” Gillard said.

With multiple smoke-filled rooms, firefighters were able to practice search and rescue techniques in an environment with several rooms and poor visibility. Firefighters also practiced “piercing nozzle” techniques. This tool, which is connected to a hose and has a sharp tip, also has several holes on the end that is designed to allow water to spray when it’s penetrated through a ceiling, wall, or floor.

“This weekend’s training also gave us the chance to work with Central Kitsap Fire & Rescue firefighters," Gillard said. "We respond to a lot of mutual aid and training such as this facilitates the opportunity to test the interoperability of our resources, apparatus, and equipment."




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