On Jan. 16 the Superior Volunteer Fire Department held an extrication training at the station. During the session, firefighters trained to be proficient in different ways on how to extricate a patient using the jaws-of-life equipment.
Crews work to remove a “victim” from a vehicle by taking apart a wrecked car. They cut and saw through the thick metal car frame, peel the roof of the car back, break windows and deploy air bags all while being timed with a stopwatch. Ideally, they get the job done within five minutes.
In a previous interview with St. Regis Fire Chief, Jerry Dockter, he explained the hazards of air bags, “they’re dangerous,” he said, “they’re powerful enough to take a head off. You need to be knowledgeable about where they are located and how to dismantle them.”
These type of exercises mimic a real emergency scene where there may be multiple things going on all at once. Emergency crews need to be able to focus on the task at hand and not be distracted by what is going on around them.