ODF live firefighter training in Central Point

CENTRAL POINT,  Ore.– As summer has been heating up this week, new wildland firefighters are taking the next steps in their training.

They were out in Central Point Friday, doing some live firefighter training with real flames.

14 new firefighters were able to get hands-on experience fighting wildfires Friday.

They learned how to work through issues with their pumps, dealing with injuries to the team and how to handle spot fires.

All these things can happen in a real wildfire situation.

Until now, these new Oregon Department of Forestry firefighters have been working in the classroom.

O.D.F. said having live trainings like this in a Central Point field is the best way to prepare them for the real thing.

O.D.F. Public Information Officer Natalie Weber said, “what we’re hoping for is to prepare them for those real life scenarios. We always want to train for the worst case, not the best.”

Weber said that even though the start to fire season has been slow, that will change, and soon.

According to O.D.F. in Jackson and Josephine counties , around 80% of local fires are human-caused.

That means they’re preventable.

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Former NBC5 News reporter Derek Strom is from Renton, Washington. He recently graduated from the Edward R. Murrow College of Communications at Washington State University with a degree in Broadcast News and a minor in Sports Management. He played in the drumline with the WSU marching band. These days, he plays the guitar and piano. Derek is a devoted fan of the Mariners, Seahawks, and Kraken.
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