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Fire and rescue units practice on two houses

April 27, 2001

Fire and rescue units practice on two houses



SHARPSBURG - Two Washington County fire and rescue companies will hold training exercises at two donated houses on Sharpsburg Pike Sunday.

Members of the Maugansville-Goodwill Fire Co. will burn a ranch-style house at 10323 Sharpsburg Pike, said 2nd Lt. Craig Sipes, who also is Maugansville training officer.

The house was donated by Manny Shaool.

Participants will gain valuable experience and a chance to hone firefighting techniques from the training exercises, Sipes said. They first "do a walk-through" of the brick home to ensure everyone knows the quickest escape routes.

At around 9 a.m. they will begin setting a series of fires and then practice their skills at dousing them, he said.

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Live hands-on training exercises are vital to a firefighter's development, especially for new recruits, according to Sipes.

"It gives them a better understanding of what they've been trained for," he said.

The company typically has a chance to use a building for training about once a year.

About 15 to 20 firefighters from Maugansville and Funkstown will participate, he said. Officials will direct traffic and an ambulance from Volunteer Fire Co. of Halfway will be on hand.

At around the same time, on the east side of Sharpsburg Pike adjacent to Interstate 70, members of the Washington County Special Operations Team will use another donated building to practice shoring and rescue techniques used in the event of a building collapse.

Led by Assistant Team Coordinator John Bentley, the training exercise is part of a class sponsored by the team and the Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute.

Both exercises are expected to conclude by 3:30 p.m.

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