Military Firefighters Training

Early Wednesday morning Billy Hinton from the NFFF and I received a tour of the training facility at Goodfellow Air Force Base from our host, Mike Robertson.  This is where the military trains all its firefighters: Air Force, Army, Marine and Navy.

There is a multi-acre facility with buildings, airplanes, cars, tankers and other training sites.

Here the trainers are the ones in the red hats leaning out the windows.  Note the gallon containers of water in the foreground.  All trainees carry them and must drink a gallon per day.

Note the dummy in the cockpit, too.

Although I’m told it’s not used much anymore, I found this training plane interesting.  Inside this wingless fuselage the passenger seats are strapped to the ceiling.  This rescue training exercise is modeled on a famous crash in Sioux City, Iowa, (I think) from back in the early 90’s in which the much-experienced pilot managed to land the plane against almost all odds.  

Although many passengers died, many more were also saved and the fuselage that held the survivors was upside down like this on the runway.  Many of the training exercises here are designed after real life examples.


The fires in the training are all propane-fueled and appear as instantly as they disappear.

Tomorrow I hope to post pictures of NORMA BROWN.  That portion of the training was particularly interesting and surprising.  Since Mike saved it for last on our tour, I will save it for last also.

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