SCRANTON -- Intense heat, smoke and fire billows out of this container at the national guard center in Scranton. The fire was controlled by the Scranton Fire Department as part of a training exercise.
Instructors from the state fire academy used a Flashover Simulator, to show firefighters how to react in real life emergency situations.
“Potentially if they aren’t paying attention to the surroundings around them the heat over them they potentially could get a flashover where everything lights up simultaneously basically floor to ceiling,” Steven Schneider.
Firefighters had to sit in the simulator with a fire burning three feet above their heads. That fire burns about 1,000 degrees as firefighters get a good look at how the flames behave.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity because like I said we do not have that ability when we are out doing work we preach on situational awareness but to be able to sit here and watch it was simply remarkable,” Dan Hallowich.
There was even a classroom portion where firefighters learned they may only have seconds to make a life or death decision.
“In reality, we tell our firefighters you have like five feet or if you’re not within five feet of a door or window you are not going to make it out of the room because you only have two seconds of direct flame contact before our gear is destroyed,” added Schneider.
The Scranton Fire Department required all its members to go through the flashover training, to help save the lives of firefighters in the future.