Mason City emergency workers train at site of former NIACC cafe

Firefighters train in Mason City 10 p.m.

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(ABC 6 News)- For years, it was a place for students to eat, relax and unwind, now the former NIACC cafeteria building will as a classroom, and that’s the last thing it will ever be.

The building saw firefighters from Mason City Fire Department, officers from the Mason City Police Department and North Iowa SWAT Special Operations Group, are using the site for immersive training in search and rescue, tactical entry and other emergency scenarios.

“The strategies and so on are gonna be the same to a certain point, but it’s just different conditions, different building construction types, that we can do additional things and refresh on the old things that we already know,” said Randy Elsbernd, the assistant deputy chief of training at MCFD.

The fire department drilled search rescue and extraction techniques, knocking down walls, bringing down ceiling tiles and playing out other scenarios to hone their incident, command and communication skills.

The law enforcement teams on site used the vacant building to train explosive breaching techniques, but to protect the sensitivity of the tactics, ABC 6 News was unable to capture on camera.

Demolition is expected to begin on Monday.