Firefighters and paramedics share expertise on joint training exercise

Avon Fire & Rescue Service (AF&RS) join forces with the Great Western Air Ambulance Charity (GWAAC), SWAST Hazardous Area Response Team (HART) alongside lecturers and Student Paramedics from the University of the West of England (UWE) to train in crucial rescue techniques.


Firefighters from Avonmouth, Southmead and Temple Fire Stations spent the day with Critical Care Doctors, Specialist Paramedics and Paramedic Students at Hicks Gate Fire Station to ensure they are joined up in rescue techniques with the aim of working together to ensure the best practices are in place when rescuing casualties.

The day gave attendees the chance to ask each other about rescue techniques and better understand the equipment available to each Service at an incident. Importantly, attendees were able to put some of these techniques to the test in three evidence-based scenarios based on previous incidents.

Firstly, a road traffic collision, where firefighters and paramedics worked together to safely extract a driver from the vehicle.

Second was a road traffic collision involving a car into a ditch. In this scenario, firefighters worked to make the car safe and used extrication procedures to remove persons from the car to allow paramedics in to treat the critically unwell patients.

And finally, a scenario which involved a person falling through a lift shaft. Firefighters used a turntable ladder to gain access to the building and used rope rescue equipment to set down paramedics into the lift shaft to provide critical care.

Lee Rogers, Station Manager for Avonmouth and Southmead Fire Stations organised the training day, he said: "One of the biggest learnings for us after incidents, especially road traffic collisions, is communication. The best way for us to improve our response at incidents and the care of those involved in such trauma, is to improve the communication between our services on the incident ground.

"It's training days like these that provide us with a great opportunity to learn from one another, better understand the equipment each service has and ultimately improve the welfare of those involve in such incidents. Thank you to all of those that helped make the training day a success.”

Watch a video about the day here: