More than 90 volunteer firefighters from the Westhampton Beach Fire department participated in an annual training, known as "Super Sunday" at the Sunset Avenue firehouse.
The firefighters took classes on four topics: hazardous materials, blood borne pathogens, sexual harassment, and the care and use of the self-contained breathing apparatus, known as SCBA.
Following the training sessions, the volunteers broke up into companies and were asked to demonstrate proficiency in the wearing and use of the SCBA pack. Officers were on hand to demonstrate correct technique and to check that each member was following proper SCBA procedure.
According to Chip Bancroft, chief of the department, the apparatus allows a firefighter to work in conditions that would normally be dangerous to life and health. Such conditions include fire smoke, hazardous chemical fumes, or oxygen deprived areas.
"Only if the apparatus is properly maintained and fitted, can it serve as intended in such situations. It is therefore critical that each firefighter maintain the skills necessary to ensure his or her safety," said Bancroft.
In 2012, Westhampton Beach firefighters responded to 489 incidents; 100 of them during Hurricane Sandy. So far this year, volunteers sprang to action 30 times.
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