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Lara /Nelson Park PAL Program
Friday 26 July marked the beginning of the Nelson Park PAL Program. The program is now in its second year after a well received program in 2012.
6 eager students, 2 teachers and several CFA staff and volunteers got together on this cold Friday to familiarise themselves with the Lara fire station and introduce them to the equipment and vehicles they will be using over the 4 week program.
The first step to the process involved a tour of the station and learning the importance of the turnout rooms, meeting room and maintenance room. The rules were discussed and laid the foundation for the expectations for the next few weeks.
After a short break it was time for the students to get into their turnout gear and form 2 groups (or crews) - the Tanker crew and the Pumper crew. Each crew was appointed a crew leader and had the task of ensuring their crew was together at all times. Then it was time to begin exploring the pumper and tanker trucks.
When exploring the exterior of the trucks the students learnt about the location of the hoses and fire fighting equipment, the safety features such as Breathing Apparatus (B.A) as well as crew protection systems and sprinkler systems. The students recognised important safety symbols such as first aid and why it was important to know its location.
There was a lot to discover about hoses! The students learnt about the sizes, materials and connections that were used in the fire fighting efforts. They were given the chance to hold different hose branches and learn about what each branch was used for. Further discussion led the students to Fire Plugs and what they looked like and where to find them.
Once the students in tanker crew had finished reviewing their first truck, Fire fighter Leigh asked them what they thought of the tanker, one student’s response was “Great!” When reflecting on what kinds of fire the tanker puts out “Bushfire!” The highlight of the session came at the end with a demonstration of the sprinkler crew protection system which was met with “Woooaaahhhh” and “Cool!” and even “That was Awesome!”
To sum up the day’s session, the students learnt about equipment and the station, but more importantly it was challenging the students to do things they wouldn’t normally do, such as listening to loud noises or overcoming a weariness of heights.
One teacher had this to say to one of the fire fighter’s “You had brilliant delivery, you really know your stuff” which shows the level of dedication that the volunteers put into imparting their knowledge to others.