March 6, 2023 – Slinger, WI – Some rigorous training over the weekend at the Slinger Fire Department as volunteer firefighters from 25 area fire departments participated in an intense series of Rapid Intervention Training (RIT).
Firefighters from Slinger, Allenton, and Germantown oversaw much of the training as volunteer firefighters, dressed in full turnout gear with oxygen tanks, were put through mock scenarios involving rescue and possibly trouble.
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“The mission of the training is to save ourselves,” said Allenton firefighter Ron Naab. “When a firefighter gets lost or injured the only way he is saved is by his efforts and those of a highly motivated and well-trained team.”
Firefighters, led by instructor John Breuer, were trained on the proper technique of pulling someone out of a hole. “Work smarter not harder,” barked Breuer. “Grab the rope like this, with your palm out and your thumb down…. like a cow’s teat. Never wrap the rope around your hand.”
Washington County firefighters were the first to host Rapid Intervention Training.
The RIT training came about after several Slinger firefighters went to Worcester, MA to participate in their training which was the result of a tragic fire that killed Worcester firefighters.
For many years Slinger FD held the training at a house on Slinger School District property. Some years there were up to three sessions. This is a 12-hour session which includes many lifesaving practices including CPR on a downed firefighter in a fire.
A RIT team consist of four firefighters making up the acronym TEAR.
Team leader – coordinates the team and communicates with command on their progress and additional help or equipment needed.
Extrication-leads the team in making way to get the team to the down firefighter.
Air supply – responsible to take contained air tank, mask etc. to firefighter.
Rope – the lifeline to get back.
Many Wood County firefighters have attended training at Slinger FD presented by Badger Firefighters Association. BFA consists of departments from Washington, Ozaukee, Dodge, Fond du Lac and Sheboygan Counties.