The Washington Times-Herald

Local News

April 17, 2014

SAVING lives

Area firefighters build highly regarded simulator

While speaking at a national conference to fire trainers, Governor Mike Pence congratulated Washington firefighters and their role in Indiana’s dedication to fire training.

About nine years ago, the two firefighters, along with other members of their shift, made it possible for the Indiana Firefighter Training System to provide low-cost, versatile, portable fire training props across the state.

Battalion Chief (ret.) Kevin Pride and Lieutenant Dwayne Murphy as well as other members of their shift, built a simulator prototype for about $1,000.

“It was brought to our attention that we needed a training prop that was easy to put up and take down,” said Murphy, looking over a set of the blueprints. “Our whole shift had a hand in making the prototype.”

This prototype realistically simulated cutting a hole in a roof for vertical ventilation, breaching a wall, and entering and exiting through a window, skills necessary to save lives and property and to reduce injuries. It can be quickly assembled and taken down.

Based on the cost efficient and innovative design, the department built 10 simulators and distributed them to each district in the state.

Murphy said because of the number of departments in each of the 10 districts, the simulators travel to different departments within each district. “We don’t actually have the apparatus here very often,” Murphy said.

The governor was speaking at the opening ceremony of the Fire Department Instructor’s Conference. The conference is held annually in Indianapolis, and is one of the largest conventions of its kind, with about 32,000 registrants for the 2014 conference. FDIC offers classes and sessions to educate firefighters in various techniques and discusses issues in the firefighter world.

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