Local firefighters learn new extrication techniques in car crash - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Local firefighters learn new extrication techniques in car crashes

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Local firefighters learned some new techniques to help save lives this weekend. 

The Southeast Tennessee Advanced Extrication class provided on site training through real life scenarios. 

Firefighters from 13 fire departments from the surrounding counties participated in the two-day training class. 

Lt. Eddie Iles, with the Red Bank Fire Department, who helped organized the event, said it took three years to bring the class to Chattanooga. 

"It's just showing different techniques that they can take back to their community and be able to help with any kind of vehicle accident that may have entrapment," said Iles. "We let the guys know upfront that this is not going to be an easy class and everybody is going to be tired when they leave."

Teams were split up throughout six stations, with six different scenarios, like overturned cars, a car stuck under a tractor trailer, and a bus accident. After the Woodmore bus crash that killed six students, Iles said efficient school bus rescue is more important than ever.

"We hate to see kid calls, and we hate to have a school bus wreck. [We] actually had the school bus station here before Woodmore, so this kind of actually drove it on home that we needed to do some more training," Iles said. "Being able to cut to see the construction on the inside, see how it's designed and that gives us a better idea on how we will be able to attack a situation when we do have a wreck or something."

Amy Maxwell, a spokeswoman for the Hamilton County Emergency Services, tells Channel 3 extrications are more common in highway crashes, because of the the speed a car travels. According to Iles, they are usually fatal. 

"You may think that it's a simple accident and then get there and it's a bit more advanced than what you think ."

He believes it's why this training is helpful; preparing firefighters for the hard word ahead. 

"It's stressful you know [on your] mind. It's also stressful on the body, because of [the] tools that we use are not light at all. They're really heavy so it takes a toll mentally and physically," said Iles.  

Organizers are working on bringing the class back to the city next year. 

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