Firefighters train for building collapse - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Firefighters train for building collapse

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Firefighters from several departments in Western Massachusetts gathered at Amelia Park Arena in Westfield Monday for training. They were taking a Massachusetts Firefighting Academy Incident Command Systems for Structural Collapse Incidents course.

Firefighters were learning what to do and who to contact if there was a building in danger of or in the process of collapsing.

Building collapses are not common, but anything from a car hitting a building, to heavy snow to tornadoes can compromise the safety of a building, according to Mark McCabe, technical rescue coordinator for the Massachusetts Firefighting Academy. He said there are many older structures in New England and building collapses are becoming more prevalent.

Classes are held twice a year and are held at different fire departments in the state. Westfield Fire Department was asked to host the latest two-day class.

Class participant and assistant team leader for the Western Massachusetts Technical Rescue Team Daryl Springman said the role of a firefighter was always growing. Springman said it was impossible for every member of the team to know everything about different emergencies.

The classes are at no cost to firefighters or departments and most firefighters were there on their own time.

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