Various fire departments in Northumberland County have been taking an extrication course for the last four days.
Firefighters from Alnwick/Haldimand Township, Hamilton Township and Cobourg Fire Department have been conducting various extrication scenarios at Chadwick’s Towing and Repairs on Veronica Street since Saturday, May 13, 2023.
The training is being done by Peter Methner who is President of On-Scene Rescue Training based out of Niagara Falls.
Using over 15 vehicles, including a van, SUV, transport cab and even a school bus, Cobourg Fire Chief Ellard Beaven said Chadwick’s Towing and Repairs has been amazing to work with.
“This training is priceless and we wouldn’t be able to do it without their support and we really want to thank them.”
Arriving at a collision is no different then pulling up to a fire scene.
“It’s scene safety.”
“Our incident commander does a 360 of the scene making sure there is no fluids, electrical, everything is safe at the scene so that our staff can move in at that point.”
“Then it’s the patient. So we can access the patient and we can extricate them as quickly and safely as possible.”
A number of motor vehicle collisions involved various fire departments and knowing each others equipment and working together is invaluable training.”
“This is something we’ve continued to expand on over the last year and this is a great opportunity to understand each others tools, equipment and skillset.”
“Working together will expand our opportunities at a mvc (motor vehicle collision).”
With some veteran firefighters taking the course having over 20 years of experience, Beaven said no two collisions are ever the same.
“We had two accidents on the 401 yesterday. None of them were the same. You continue to have to learn and you’ll never stop learning in this career.”
Over the years, the vehicles are becoming more safer, but also complex and sometimes more dangerous for firefighters rescuing patients.
“With air bags and more safety is involved. Now electronic vehicles is changing how we do things. What we learned 20 years ago, we cannot continue to extricate people in that fashion. We have to keep evolving and honing our skills.”