Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Technical Rescue Trench Training

One of the most potentially challenging and multidisciplined incidents fire service personnel may face is Trench Rescue. It is a dynamic environment that tends to be physically and mentally challenging due to the duration and unpredictable environment. Earlier this month Tacoma Fire Department's Technical Rescue Team conducted their monthly trench training. The goal of this training was to address rescuer safety; understanding WAC regulations covering trenches and excavations; preplanning; assessing soil composition; cave-in evaluation; stabilization and shoring using wood and air shores. Not only must the mechanical issues of stabilization be considered, but patients may also be facing traumatic injuries, hypothermia or experiencing the often forgotten complications of Crush Syndrome. Trench and excavation incidents are "Low Frequency, High Hazard" rescues. This ongoing training provides the necessary skills and knowledge for TFD's Technical Rescue Team to respond to Trench Rescue emergencies.