Over 50 firefighters from Nottinghamshire and South Yorkshire, plus colleagues from East Midlands Ambulance Service's Hazardous Area Response Team (HART), took part in Exercise 'School's Out' in Harworth recently to test joint working and breathing apparatus skills.
The exercise, set in the former North Border Junior School, focused on a large fire scenario with multiple casualties trapped inside the building. It brought together a number of resources based across the county, all of which could be called upon to support at an incident or emergency situation in Nottinghamshire.
Group Manager Chris Clark, who was the Incident Commander for the exercise, said: "Our mobilising system will always send the nearest available appliance to an incident, utilising the mutual support arrangements that are in place with our neighbouring fire services. This means that crews from South Yorkshire are sometimes mobilised to incidents in Nottinghamshire, and vice versa.
"Training alongside each other, and with partner agencies such as HART is therefore extremely useful as it helps us hone our joint approach to incidents, enable us to become more effective and efficient, and develops a greater understanding of each other's capabilities."
Station Manager Chris Emmott co-ordinated the exercise. He said: "Our crews exercise their skills continuously on a local level, but this gave us an opportunity to bring together a large number of resources and disciplines to practice our response to what would be a large and extremely challenging incident.
"I was really pleased with how the exercise went, and our thanks go to John Heggie, the school caretaker, Delta Academy, and Harworth and Bircotes Sports Pavilion for allowing us to use their car park as our rendezvous point. Without their support the exercise would not have been possible."