DMS students get inside look at fire station

By David Dinell
Derby Informer – April 26, 2017

Photo by David Dinell. Click on photo to view full-size.

There’s a lot more to being a firefighter than riding a truck with flashing red lights and a loud siren.

A group of students from Derby Middle School’s Teen Leadership 2 class found that out firsthand during a recent 40-minute visit at Station 82 on North Rock Road.

Firefighter II Skyeler Reynolds, who led the tour, urged the students to work on their studies. And if they’re going into firefighting, be sure to pay attention in chemistry class.

“There’s a lot more chemistry involved in this than I thought,” Reynolds said.

Getting to the point of being hired as a professional in the field involves a lot of training, he said, but it’s necessary because when the need arises, firefighters have to rely on their skills in a split second.

Like many professionals, firefighters can make mistakes, but the important thing is to learn from them and not repeat the error, he said.

In answer to one of many questions from the students, Reynolds said while he may not remember his very first call, he does remember his first real fire.

Actually, today’s firefighters handle far more medical calls than fires, say those in the profession. That’s because of demands of an aging population combined with better and stricter building codes and fire prevention measures that have decreased the sheer volume of fire calls overall in past years.

Reynolds showed the students the variety of equipment packed into one truck, including specialized rescue gear.

He confessed that if there’s an aspect of rescues he doesn’t like it’s working in confined spaces, but sometimes that’s part of a call, he said.

The huge truck also doesn’t get much in the way of gas mileage – only 4 mpg, he said to several gasps.

And that breathing mask worn when firefighters go into smoke or flames? It’s necessary, he said, but it does make a firefighter sound like Darth Vader.

As a public service entity, Reynolds said he does have a unique customer base: “It’s the whole city.”

He also urged students to call 911 quickly in an emergency situation as time can be of the essence.

“It’s not a bad thing to do if it’s needed,” he said.

The class, under the direction of teacher Angie Draney, undertakes a variety of tours throughout Derby in order to learn about the community and its different functions. Past tours have include City Hall and observing a mock Derby City Council meeting.


Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
KSFFA’s Fire News Blog Home Page

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