Greensboro firefighters train to save their own

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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Greensboro fire officials are crediting their training for saving lives in the auto shop fire last week.

Captain Sterling Suddarth is still recovering from burns at Wake Forest Baptist Hospital. He is expected to be in the hospital for at least a couple more weeks.

Each of Greensboro's firefighters has to go through 240 hours of training each year.

Part of their training is maneuvering through a plywood maze that is built to simulate a collapsed building. Some of the spots are so tight firefighters have to detach their air packs from their backs to get through.

Greensboro Fire Chief Skip Nix says all their training paid off in Thursday's fire.

"Captain Boswell's air pack came off his back and he had to remember the training he went through out here and he's even said that that made a difference in his life being saved," explains Chief Skip Nix, with the Greensboro Fire Department.

On every call, some firefighters are assigned to be part of a rapid intervention crew. The crew's job is to go in and rescue a downed firefighter.

"Most of the time we don't have to worry about that, but on Thursday we did," says Chief Nix.

Firefighters realize just how close of a call Thursday's fire really was.

"We know where they were at and with the beam where it fell, had it been two feet in another direction they could've lost their life," says Chief Nix.

The three other Greensboro firefighters that were injured in the fire are Matthew Clapp, Bryan Bachemin, and Shane Boswell. None of them have returned to work yet.

1 Comment

  • Terry Pegram

    Why do you list Skip Nix as Greensboro Fire Chief. Their website list Greg Grayson as Fire Chief. Maybe Mr. Nix is a Asst. Chief.

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