Live fire training
Upper McKenzie Fire Practices Firefighting
By Norm Michaels, Chief
On December 8 Upper McKenzie firefighters had the opportunity to hone their fire fighting skills by burning an old house. The house, which was not habitable, was donated by Tokatee Golf Club to be burned to provide practice with live fire. This house presented a challenge to the department because it had a shop within six feet of the house, which the people at Tokatee wanted to save.
This opportunity gave the fire department both the challenge of controlling fire in a burning building and the challenge of saving the adjacent structure from being burned. This is a unique opportunity which provided valuable experience for both of these operations. The people at Tokatee placed metal roofing material against the shop to act as a heat shield, which along with fire fighters applying water to the shop resulted in a successful operation.
There were a dozen firefighters participating in the exercise, along with one fire fighter and a water tender from McKenzie Fire & Rescue. The additional tender was needed to ensure there was sufficient water available to protect the shop.
Upper McKenzie Fire provides this service to our community for owners who have buildings which are beyond repair and need to be removed. Due to the excellent training that such a building provides, the fire department does not charge for this service. Lane County cooperates by reducing the fee for a demolition permit, and the resulting clean up is much less costly and does not send nearly as much material to the land fill. Anyone who has questions or who might have a building to donate should contact Upper McKenzie Fire at 541-822-3479.
McKenzie River Reflections