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WDEL's Delaware EducationWatch
with Amy Cherry

Fighting fire with fire

A controlled fire burns at a fire camp.
Do you have what it takes to be a wildland firefighter? If you say yes, and you've got physical stamina and a sense of adventure, then the Delaware's Forest Service's one-day fire camp is for you.

Henry Poole: "At Blackbird, the fire camp, directly relates to what we do when we get out there on a western fire assignment."

Henry Poole, Assistant Forestry Administrator with the Delaware Forest Service, says trainees will learn hands-on how to combat a wildfire and stay alive in Blackbird State Forest in Smyrna.

Poole: "We have a live fire exercise where students and trainees and new recruits can see the proper and effective use of fire in the landscape and actually, how we use it to fight fire."

If they learn anything, Poole hopes it's that wildfire conditions can change in an instant.

Poole: "Be cognizant of the weather and the conditions that they're in."

He says the biggest challenge--that recruits won't get in their one day training--is just how exhausting wildfire fighting can be.

Poole: "14 days of firefighting, typically it's 16-hour days, so after awhile you get pretty tired, but it's rewarding."

The best part?

Poole: "It's a good feeling just to come away helping people."

Training costs $20 dollars and isn't just for firefighters. It's Saturday April 20th from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

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