Louisiana Firefighters Receive Flashover Training

In Louisiana, firefighters can attend Louisiana State University Fire and Emergency Institute for some of their initial and continued training. LSU FETI is located in Baton Rouge, and they also have a facility (LSU FETI at Pine Country) located at Camp Minden in Minden. LSU FETI at Pine Country host a monthly drill night each month for volunteer and paid fire departments.

In October, Pine Country also hosted training for flashovers. Volunteers from the surrounding area attended a three-day training with class time and a live flashover evolution. Firefighters who recently began in the fire service and several who have been in the fire service for years attended.

Backdraft: a situation that can occur when a fire is deprived of oxygen, combustions stops but temperatures remain high, and when oxygen is reintroduced, combustion can begin again causing an explosive effect as the gases heat and expand. Flashover: occurs when the majority of surfaces in a compartment are heated to the point they give off flammable gases that are hot enough to sustain combustion. Well, those definitions explain a lot. But what do they really mean, how does it really look? How do they know what they are seeing in fire?

Many of those attending had never been in the flashover chamber. Without training, firefighters could easily find themselves in situations that could cost them their life, or the life of their fellow firefighter. Training keeps firefighters sharp and ready so they can continue to save and protect property and lives.