|Fire Service Officers being put through their paces by the Coast Guard during the maritime course.??(C. Pitt/BGIS)??|
Ten Barbados Fire Service (BFS) officers are now better able to perform rescue attempts in flooding situations or to respond to fires at sea: ??This is as a result of a Basic Maritime Safety Training Course which they successfully undertook recently.
The one-week course was conducted by the Barbados Coast Guard at its HMBS Pelican Base on Spring Garden.
According to Course Coordinator, Chief Petty Officer Ryan Selby, the fire fighters were exposed to the rudiments of handling and maintaining inflatable rubber craft, the correct use of personal flotation devices, small boat handling, and international speed boat regulations.
They were also taught the techniques to be applied during rescuing missions in turbulent waters, and in situations of flash flooding, as well as water safety techniques.?? As part of the exercise, the officers also practiced crossing a flooded area using rope to rescue trapped persons in flooded situations, and ???man overboard’ drills using a small boat.
Course participant Acting Sub-Officer Levere Jordan, who spoke on behalf of the BFS officers, said the course was a timely addition to their firefighting skills; noting that "It has taught us how to handle flooding, persons trapped at sea in choppy waters and boat fires.?? As a result, we [BFS] are now in a better position to deal with such situations if and when they occur."