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Ohio FFs credit survival training in recent low air, collapse incidents

Columbus firefighters have had successful outcomes in two mayday incidents


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By Bill Carey FireRescue1

COLUMBUS, Ohio. — Within less than a week, the Columbus Division of Fire encountered two mayday situations that emphasized the importance of firefighter survival training.

“The unknowns are every house is a little different, you’re walking into it with zero visibility,” Columbus Fire Battalion Chief Jeffrey Geitter told NBC4.

The first incident occurred last Friday, while firefighters were assisting in a house fire in Franklin Township, NBC4 reports. Geitter explained that two firefighters found themselves trapped in the basement with their SCBA supply running low, but their colleagues successfully assisted in their rescue.

The second incident occurred on Wednesday morning while the firefighters were fighting a fire in a condominium near Blacklick Township. During this fire, two firefighters issued mayday calls after sections of the stairwell and ceiling collapsed on them.

“The training was proven to be excellent. There is a little luck involved obviously because there are so many variables,” Geitter said. “However, you position yourself to be lucky by being prepared and going through all the training we do on a routine basis.”

The fire department training academy can create scenarios for firefighters to practice rescuing other firefighters.