HCFR hosts multi-agency training to prepare for wildfires

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – The Wildfire Team is advancing their training, preparing for potential wildfires in the county.

The multi-agency training was hosted by Horry County Fire Rescue and included firefighters from HCFR, Midlands Fire Rescue, and North Myrtle Beach Fire Rescue.

Having the different agencies training together will benefit the crews when they are out in the field working together.

Most emergency responders are already training in basic wildfire skills. Thursday's training advances those skills with the saw team.

Chainsaws are used to help contain the flames by getting rid of any vegetation that acts as fuel for the fire.

When responding to a wildfire, a team is sent out to scout the area. That team looks for anything around the home that could fuel the flames. Items like patio furniture, pine straw, and draperies inside the house will be removed to protect homes until the wildfire can be extinguished.

Meanwhile, a team is cutting down vegetation, slowing the fire down and keeping it from climbing into the crowns of trees or jumping over ditches.

This can be done by digging a fire line.

"A fire can get down and smolder, so if we can't bring a plow in , these guys are brought in to cut hand lines and bring the vegetation down to the soil level, which will stop the fire from proceeding," explained Battalion Chief Brian VanAernem with Horry County Fire Rescue.

The training isn't just for during a wildfire but will also be implemented after a storm passes through. The same firefighters training on Thursday will be the ones out in the road getting rid of debris so cars can pass through.

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