Hicks Gate fire station to host USAR open day

Hicks Gate Fire Station will be throwing its doors open to the public this Saturday (17/08), showcasing Urban Search & Rescue (USAR) and how firefighters keep local communities safe.

From 10am to 4pm, the open day will focus on the national resilience capabilities that ensure community safety through location extraction and stabilisation in structural collapse.

Staff will also demonstrate risk reduction and how everyone can play a part in making safety a key part of their daily lives through a range of activities and demonstrations at the Station on Durley Hill.

Firefighters from Avon Fire & Rescue Service (AF&RS) will be taking part in several demonstrations, including road traffic collision, turntable ladder, and several different USAR demonstrations including line access casualty extrication, braking & breaching, lifting and moving, and confined space. 

There will also be a display from a USAR dog, showcasing their unique scent tracking and search abilities.  

Staff will also be on hand to show off some of the fire engines and rescue equipment, along with answering any questions around fire safety and demonstrating basic lifesaving skills.

Visitors will be able to get involved with various activities and will have an opportunity to speak to firefighters on the front line about their role in making communities safer and the Service stronger.

Shane Saunders, White Watch Manager at Hicks fire station, said: “This will be a great opportunity for local people to come along & find out more about the work we do in the local community and beyond!

“Now more than ever, firefighters at Hicks Gate provide a lifesaving search and rescue function that can be called upon across the country. Staff are specially trained to be able to deal with incidents involving structure collapse and complex rescue operations in hazardous environments.

“Days like this allow us to demonstrate our capabilities, which now go far beyond the local community.   

“However, we do still respond to typical incidents as well, and everyone is invited to come down and see how we respond on a day to day basis, and what they can do to help keep themselves, friends and family safe.”

There will be limited parking on station for Blue Badge holders only, but more is available in Keynsham Football club carpark, as well as some limited parking opposite the fire station on Durley Hill.

Also there on the day with games, information, demonstrations and food and drink will be a number of our supporting partners & organisations including South Westen Ambulance's Hazardous Area Response Team (HART) and Avon and Somerset Police's traffic and armed response units.

Any donations on the day are welcome and will go to the Fire Fighters Charity and Fire service Benevolent fund.