Eau Claire Fire Department completes building collapse training

Eau Claire (WQOW)- The Eau Claire Fire Department is keeping up with its training, and now firefighters are working on structural collapse training. 

Deputy Chief Allyn Bertrang said they work on structural collapse training once or twice a year. 

Bertrang said it’s important to have this practice so all the firefighters are prepared in case a building or home caves in. 

He said heavy windstorms, ice storms and heavy snow storms can cause collapses. 

Bertrang said structural collapses have happened in Eau Claire and when they do, they use shore equipment to keep the ceilings or stairways up, so it’s safer for them to go inside. 

"The reason that we firefighters train for it is certainly people can be affected by that," Bertrang said. "Homes can have collapses, bridges can have collapses, people can become trapped, people can become hurt. So, we train so that we can go to the emergency, we can secure the area, we can shore up the buildings and then we can go inside and rescue people that need to be rescued."

Bertrang said they train at the fire department, Chippewa Valley Technical College and Volk Field. 

He said they use vacant buildings when they can. 

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