Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Photos: Fire crews rescue ‘casualties’ from ship during training exercise

09:18 03 April 2013

The fire crews training at Babcock Marine, Appledore, on Tuesday night.

The fire crews training at Babcock Marine, Appledore, on Tuesday night.

Archant

Training evening simulated a fire in the confined spaces of a naval ship under construction at Babcock Marine in Appledore.

The fire crews training at Babcock Marine, Appledore, on Tuesday night.The fire crews training at Babcock Marine, Appledore, on Tuesday night.

ANYONE passing by Babcock Marine last Tuesday evening would have been forgiven for thinking a major incident was going on.

But in actual fact, four fire crews from Bideford, Torrington and Appledore were taking part in an important training exercise.

With a ‘fire’ in the engine room of a naval ship currently being built at the shipyard, crews arrived at the scene to find they had to rescue three ‘casualties’.

While the fire may not have existed and the casualties were in fact made out of sacks, the training exercise is vital for crews to gain valuable experience.

“Babcock is one of the biggest employers in the area and it’s really important we’re familiar with it in case we ever need to attend a real incident here,” said Graham Rooke, Bideford Station Manager.

“The ship is half way through it’s build at the moment but when it is nearer completion the small compartments could fill with smoke quickly and there’s a lot of combustible substances on board.”

Wearing breathing apparatus, small teams wearing blanking masks were sent into the confined spaces of the ship to carry out a search for casualties.

Neil Hole, watch commander for Bideford, said: “These imitate what it’s like to enter a smoke-logged building; it’s like looking through milk bottles.

“The team have to conduct a left-hand search, meaning they keep their hands on the left wall of the ship, and shuffle through with their feet.

“In a real situation, if you don’t follow this procedure or don’t pick out landmarks such as doors and windows on your way through, it’s amazing how quickly you can get disorientated in even a small room.”

With the casualties successfully rescued and everyone out of the ship without injury, the 45 minute training exercise was a success.

David Wainwright, ship manager at Babcock, said the evening had been beneficial for staff at the shipyard as well as the fire service.

He said: “Carrying out exercises on the ships improves our fire and rescue capabilities and also proves the systems we have in place.

“Some of the team who work on site are retained fire fighters so that is also great for us; we’re quite lucky to have them.

“It’s been a successful evening and we want to thank the fire teams for coming down and for their efforts.”

IN PICTURES: To see more photos from the training exercise, click the gallery in the top right of the page.

0 comments

Other News Stories

07:30
A strategy is being developed to help safeguard the future of Barnstaple Pannier Market.

Teenage markets form part of proposals to safeguard future of town’s historic market

Read more
Yesterday, 14:38
The crash on the North Devon Link Road

Van driver had to be removed from his vehicle on a spinal board after collision on Link Road in May, a court heard.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:17
Clovelly

Fire fighters had to rush to the scene to release the woman after her car lost traction on a steep hill and began rolling backwards.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:15
Adam Clark with the cheque for Children with Cancer UK. Picture: Contributed

Readers track Adam down to present him with cheque for children’s cancer charity

Read more
Yesterday, 09:45
North Devon MP Peter Heaton-Jones

Peter Heaton-Jones appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary in Theresa May’s new government

Read more
Yesterday, 09:30
Exeter Crown Court. Picture by Alex Walton

Judge says activities could have led to ‘serious road accident’

Read more
Yesterday, 09:20
Join Joe Pasquale in Ilfracombe on Friday, August 12.

Funny man at the Landmark with his new show on Friday, August 12

Read more
Yesterday, 07:30
North Devon's CCTV service is currently under review. Picture: Getty/Alice-Photo

Police and Crime Commissioner proposal could offer coverage to other towns and help sustain current service

Read more
Mon, 17:36
The Watersmeet House tea room near Lynmouth.

The National Trust says if Watersmeet House can’t be repaired soon, it might never reopen

Read more
Mon, 14:57
The rock pool at Westward Ho!

The rock pool has been closed today (Monday) to be drained after concerns youths were spotted kicking bottles into it.

Read more

Local Weather

Rain

Rain

max temp: 17°C

min temp: 16°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications