The firefighters who make up the teams participating in Saturday’s technical rescue drill spend hundreds of hours to ensure they are ready to step in and save our lives when a disaster strikes.
In what is known as an urban rescue mission, the firefighters are trained to save lives in extreme real world circumstances. For instance, if a building collapses or if someone is in a confined space. As with traditional firefighters, these teams deploy at a moment's notice to wherever in the state they are needed. Event organizers say this competition is an effective way of showing the participants how they'd handle disaster.
"The task is not just to get the last victim out, it’s to use their training, use it safely, accomplish some goals that someone else set up, and give them a taste of a real life scenario, just like real life and we're learning things," says Lt. Chris Scott of the Rockford Fire Department
Teams are given three hours to finish their assigned task and will then be evaluated on their ability to not only save lives, but to do so in a safe manner. These teams are trained to be self sufficient in extreme circumstances for up to 36 hours.
The competition will wrap up Sunday afternoon. There are currently 37 technical rescue teams throughout the state.