Local Fire Departments Participated in Controlled Burn Submitted: 02/10/2013
Story By Shardaa Gray

PELICAN - You might have seen flames or smoke in the Pelican area.

It wasn't an actual emergency.

Pelican, Crescent, Monico and Pine Lake fire departments spent their Saturday night training on how to handle a structure fire.

"This is, especially for the younger fire fighters, this gives a great opportunity for them to get some nozzle time," said Jacob Lobermeier, Battalion Chief of Crescent Fire Department.

"It allows them to see the characteristics of a fire behavior."

"It's a controlled environment where we make sure everyone stays safe. There's no unnecessary risk or burns." said Nick Strupp, Lieutenant of Pelican Fire Department.

Part of the purpose of this exercise is to teach the younger fire fighters to manage their water supply.

"Typically in a rural situation you have to either take in the water or pump in from a stream or a pond and its limited." said Lobermeier.

The Cops family donated their barn. President of Cops Trust, Rose Suomi, says it was difficult for them to maintain the barn.

"The barn is just really dilapidated and we're not keeping it up. It really is beginning to be a hazard," said President of Cop Trust, Rose Suomi.

"We've thought about pulling it down with the bulldozers and trucks and stuff, but we thought if the fire department wanted to do this, it would be beneficial for them to train."

Even though this is used for training purpose for different fire departments, it's bitter sweet for the Cops family.

"My great grandparents purchased this around the 1930's and the barns been used. My dad lived here as a child. They came up from Chicago during the great depression." Suomi said.

To further their training, the fire departments do exercises inside where they can practice situations where peoples lives are at stake.

"You don't do it every day, there's not a structured fire every day. So it is always good in a controlled environment to own your skills and get practice again." Lobermeier said.

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