Explorer Expo

Junior firefighters get feel for the job

by Celia Shortt

alt

Members of Coweta County’s Explorer Post 700 participate in the Pittsburg Drill, a drill in which they simulate locating and rescuing a downed firefighter. 

Coweta County Fire Department’s first Explorers Expo and Competition was a success on Saturday as teenagers from across Georgia and from as far away as Texas came to compete, learn and have fun.

The Explorers is part of the Learn for Life program, and each Explorer post focuses on various careers, including firefighting. In those posts with fire departments, each group consists of teenage boys and girls, ages 14 to 18, who want to learn about the trade.

“Our goal is that everyone has fun,” said firefighter Justin Klinger, who is also a lead advisor with the Explorers. “Of course, we want to win, but if we have fun doing it, it will be great.”

The Coweta County Fire Department Explorer Expo and Competition is simply a “friendly competition with other Explorer groups from across the country,” he added.

The competition featured six different events, testing basic firefighting skills along with mental and physical strength. One event, “quick dress,” required each Explorer to go from street clothes to their full firefighter dress in under two minutes, which is an actual requirement for firefighters.

Another event was the Pittsburg Drill, which simulated finding and rescuing a downed firefighter. Participants would crawl through a tight space, resembling a pet door. Then they would crawl along the ground, up and over an A frame and through a metal tunnel until they reached the mannequin, or “downed firefighter.”

From there, they would pull the mannequin back through the tunnel and over the obstacles through which they had just come until everyone was back at the starting site.

Other events included: a relay race, testing strength, coordination and mental acuity; a barrel race, testing maneuverability; an obstacle course, testing team work; and a bucket brigade, using buckets to move water.

In addition to Coweta’s Explorer Post 700, posts from Peachtree City, Henry County, Helena, and Cass County, Tx., participated.

“This is our first event, and we have five different groups … I’m excited,” said Alan Smith, assistant chief of Coweta County’s fire department.

“I’m proud we had five groups show up for our first one.” Smith hopes to make the event an annual one, but, more importantly, he hopes through this competition the Explorer members will not only learn and have fun, but will also be able to network with firefighters and members of other Explorer posts.

“Maybe some of them will become firefighters one day,” he added.



More Local

Georgia to execute only woman on state's death row

ATLANTA (AP) — The only woman on Georgia's death row is set to be executed Monday. Kelly Renee Gissendaner, who's 46, is set to die at ... Read More


10 Things to Know for Today

Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Monday: 1. FEDS CLOSE TO PUBLISHING FINDING ... Read More


Programs reflect growing diversity in schools

Coweta County – like the rest of Georgia – is growing more diverse, and that is reflected in programs being held in the county&r ... Read More


Eye-catching billboard may help catch killer

When travelling on Interstate 85 north through Fairburn, many motorists have taken notice of Donna “Denice" Roberts’ face on a l ... Read More


Acceptance starts with liking one’s self

“Diversity – it starts with you.” That was the message that keynote speaker Nick Ferrante brought to the Diversity Day pro ... Read More

Tradition dates to 1422 in England

Bankruptcy Inn of Court named to honor Drake

The recently formed Georgia Bankruptcy American Inn of Court has been named for W. Homer Drake Jr. of Newnan. Drake is U.S. Bankruptcy Court ... Read More