Live Fire Burn Training Exercise a Success


Eastsound, WA – Orcas Island Fire & Rescue conducted a successful Live Fire Burn Training Exercise on Saturday, February 24th! The Glenwood Inn property near the north shore provided an invaluable opportunity for our firefighters to gain practical experience in a controlled environment.

The opportunity to train at the Glenwood Inn site, both during the burn and in the months preceding, provided our existing firefighters and new recruits with real-world training scenarios in a manner that cannot be perfectly replicated using training props. OIFR used the property before the Live Fire many times for search, rescue, forcible entry, ladders, building materials, construction, and other types of training. “It would be safe to say hundreds of per-person training hours were completed at the Glenwood Inn,” shared Fire Chief vanSchaick.

During the training exercise, participants engaged in three controlled fire scenarios. They wore 60 lbs. of bunker gear and self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), completed scene size-ups as if arriving at a housefire, and deployed a hose from the cross-lay to attack the fire. A second team deployed another hose as a backup line to create a real-life simulation. Pump operators practiced drafting from a drop tank, simulating our Tender Shuttle operations necessary where no hydrants are available.

The cost savings to the District of providing this training on the island is significant. Equally valuable is the ability to keep our responders here on the island ready to respond to real emergencies while training together in a real-world environment. These scenarios allowed our firefighters to experience firsthand the challenges and complexities associated with firefighting operations while maintaining a strong focus on safety and industry standards.

We extend our gratitude to the San Juan County Conservation Land Bank, Peter Guillozet, Assistant Chief Don Swain, and the San Juan Preservation Trust for making this training opportunity a reality for our personnel. We also want to express our appreciation to our dedicated department members, who spent time preparing the house ahead of time in addition to an entire Saturday at the Glenwood Inn for the burn. It was hard work, and they showed their commitment to continuous improvement to protect and serve our community.

Scroll to Top