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CalCo Fire benefits as host for training
- Feb. 27

By Nick Baptista

   Calaveras Consolidated Fire Protection District played host to an intense 16-hour Trench Rescue Technician Class this week that attracted 25 firefighters from as far away as Folsom and Santa Clara.

   CalCo Fire Chief Jason Robitaille said there are about a 100 deaths a year in the United States attributed to trench collapses and although it could be considered a relatively rare type of accident, it is fortunate the opportunity is available for his district’s firefighters to receive this unique form of training.

   Specialized Fire-Rescue taught the course and CalCo had four firefighters participating in the training.

   In addition, personnel from the area’s utility districts had the opportunity to observe the training and find out how firefighters will proceed if utility workers find themselves in a collapsed trench situation.

   The district’s firefighters took the course at no cost since CalCo provided the facilities, Robitaille said.

   The district has hosted a variety of courses this winter. Those courses included a wildland fire academy, confined space awareness course and hazardous materials operations class. The CalCo station on Jenny Lind Road served as a campground during the wildland fire academy as firefighters from throughout the state took up residence outside the station during the duration of the training.

   Several more courses will be conducted at the station prior the start of the fire season, Robitaille said.

   In addition to hosting all of these courses and receiving the benefit of free training for CalCo’s personnel, the district’s firefighters, many of whom are just beginning their careers, get an opportunity to meet and work with veteran firefighters from throughout the state, Robitaille said.

   “We’re also gaining the reputation as a hospitable department and that’s what we like to be known for,” he added.




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