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Local high school students practice Hazmat protocols with Rochester Fire Department

Jaclyn Harold
Created: February 29, 2020 07:49 PM

(ABC 6 News) -- High school students from all over Olmsted County joined the Rochester Fire Department for another weekend of training.

Previously, students participated in a burn box demonstration that required them to work as a team to locate and extinguish a fire in a confined space, much like a building fire. This weekend, a dozen students joined the firefighters at Station 4 for a little lesson on hazardous materials. 

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"Part of the curriculum for Firefighter One and Two is the Hazmat awareness or hazardous materials awareness and operations," said Jeremy Zabel who is with the Rochester Fire Department.

The day started out with a classroom session explaining some of the different types of hazardous materials and how to identify them. After the class was over, the students transitioned to the hands-on portion of the day.

"Out here, we're dealing with how to decontaminate not only if a citizen gets the product on them but also our firefighters and first-responders that go in and actually try to mitigated or stop the spread of whatever it is," said Zabel.

Some of the participants expressed that they are certain about a future in public safety, like Byron High School student Carter Wilde, whose father sparked his interest.

"My dad has been a volunteer firefighter for over twenty years and I've been to the fire hall a lot. And I really love it," said Wilde.

Though some of the other students are still on the fence about the future of their career paths, officials say it's still a cool experience and great exposure should they choose firefighting as a career.


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