Crews work collaboratively during local hospital training exercise

Earlier this month, over 20 firefighters from Blue Watch Temple, Southmead, Kingswood, and Hicks Gate took part in a training exercise at Nuffield Health Bristol Hospital in Clifton.

The aim of the exercise was to simulate a real-life fire evacuation in a hospital setting and to test our firefighters' skills, resilience, and capabilities. Synthetic smoke was released in the Outpatient Department corridor and consulting rooms, and crews were sent in to rescue patients who were situated inside the building.

Exercises like this, are vitally important as they help us to develop and improve our operational response and tactical thinking whilst working in an often challenging and unfamiliar environment, showcasing the possible challenges they might face when working in those environments.

During the exercise crews discovered an MRI scanner whilst searching for casualties, which is essentially a giant magnet which and when in close proximity to a firefighter wearing metal breathing apparatus could be fatal. Challenges like this, although quite rare help crews to reassess their approach when rescuing casualties in unfamiliar and possibly dangerous territory and promotes the importance of acting out these scenarios in places like a hospital.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the crews involved in the exercise, and Nuffield Health Bristol for being so accommodating on the day, and for allowing us to carry out our training in a busy real-life setting.