1. #1
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    Default Duthcess County Explorer Weekend

    http://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/t...062004s3.shtml

    "Teens train in fire-fighting techniques
    'Explorers' learn real skills
    By Elizabeth Lynch
    Poughkeepsie Journal


    The hardest part for many of the teen-age firefighter trainees Saturday was getting over the wall and positioning themselves to rappel down the side of the six-story building.
    Fourteen-year-old Amanda Burns got over the wall, paused, looked back up and said, ''I'm not doing this.''

    But she did.

    ''I would do it again,'' Burns said later. The Hyde Park teen joined the Fairview fire district Explorer Post in January.

    Explorers is a division of the Boy Scouts of America. The program is designed to give young people real-life experiences in various occupations, including policing and fire fighting.

    Nearly 80 teens between the ages of 14 and 18 participated in a course Saturday at the Dutchess County Department of Emergency Response Training Center on Creek Road in Hyde Park.

    This, the first-ever such event in Dutchess, was dedicated to the memory of Paul Tegtmeier, a volunteer firefighter with the Roosevelt fire department and a New York City firefighter who died during the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center.

    ''This is to honor and remember my friend Paul,'' said Craig Elderkin, a paid firefighter at Fairview who also works with the company's Explorers. ''If this was around when we were young, we would have jumped at it.''

    Training is real

    In addition to rappelling, the trainees learned auto extrication, how to climb down the ladder of a fire truck, how to work while wearing an oxygen mask, and how to conduct search-and-rescue.

    ''This is not being geared down because they're kids,'' said Anthony Conte, an adviser to the Hughsonville Explorer Post and one of the event organizers. The training is the same working firefighters receive and prepares the teens to volunteer in a department or for careers as firefighters, he said.

    In Dutchess County, some Explorers can ride along to emergencies with the fire departments. They do not enter burning buildings, but remain outside, getting equipment and taking care of other tasks.

    During the ''mask confidence'' segment, the trainees had to wear an air pack and squeeze through small spaces while carrying 80 pounds of gear -- all without losing their masks.

    Jennifer Dempsey, 15, of Lake Carmel, said learning mask confidence is a bit scary, at first. ''Sometimes, they'll snag you [with a net] in the open just to see if you can get out of it,'' she said.

    Many trainees said they intend to become career firefighters, or volunteers.

    ''The biggest thing is giving back to the community,'' Millerton resident Robert Stevens, 17, said. ''The best thing is doing something I didn't know I could do before.''

    Provided by the
    Poughkeepsie Journal "

    I attended that yesterday, if you go to the actual site you will see the girl that rappeled right before me, and the guy crawling through masked confidence was in my group. The guy who is quoted in the last paragraph of the article is my Lt.

    But we had a whole lot of fun, extrication, hose advancement, search and rescue, ladder ops., rappaling, masked confidence. Of course, we didnt wear "oxygen" masks, once again the journalist doesnt take the time to get the facts.

    Last edited by FiftyOnePride; 06-20-2004 at 07:18 PM.
    JLS
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    Our explorers attended the weekend and had a blast, the girl in the photo is actually our Lt. and one of our other girls was quoted. Dutchess did a great job, we look forward to having them at our training/campout weekend in Aug.

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    Inviting Millerton down?


    Glad they had fun, we had a lot of fun too.
    JLS
    MFC
    51 Pride - R.I.P. Sandy
    Alarm 200644004, I won't ever forget.


    Remember you only have 1*.

    IACOJ

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    We had sent out may invites, Putnam, Westchester, Rockland, Dutchess, Long Island and FDNY. Last year's weekend had over 80 kids, for pictures, check out our web site www.lcfd.com, if you would like an invite you can email me at erin.fitzsimmons@lcfd.com

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