Crash and Burn: Firefighters Go To School

NEWPORT CITY – There’s no doubt that firefighting has changed over the years. To keep up with the latest changes, firefighters from both sides of the border converged at the North Country Career Center Saturday and Sunday for the annual fire school.The Northeast International Mutual Aid Association sponsored the event. This year, members from 12 departments attended the school. The majority of the firefighters were from the Orleans County area, however, some were from Woodbury, VT, and Mansonville, Beebe and Stanstead, Quebec. Nine different classes included instructions about self-contained breathing apparatus, arson detection, mobile command, emergency vehicle operations, rural water supply and modern vehicle extraction. Duane Moulton, president of the association, said there is only one way first responders can safety cut apart a Hybrid car.State instructors and staff from Green Mountain Catamount Fire Training taught the classes.The annual classes are not mandatory but most of the firefighters took at least one so they will keep up with the best ways to do their jobs.“The fire service is constantly changing,” explained Moulton. “You have to keep the firefighters up to date. Years ago, you never fought fire with air packs, but now you need to use them for almost everything because materials that catch fire are hazardous and toxic.”