The firefighters of the Exclusion Zone take on the world experience in extinguishing forest fires

In order to prepare for the firefighting period of 2018 in the Exclusion Zone on the basis of SSE “Ecocentre” for the firefighters of the SSE “Pivnichna Pushcha”, the staff of the Regional East European Fire Monitoring Center (REEFMC) of the National University of Life and Environmental Sciences of Ukraine (NULES) with the support of the US Forest Service conducted a training on personal safety and the extinguishing of forest fires. During the event, a draft regulation on the interaction of fire services of the Exclusion Zone at various levels of fire hazard was presented, which was developed on the basis of decision of 5th National Coordination Meeting on the improvement of the prevention and extinguishment of forest fires in the Exclusion Zone.

"Familiarization with the best international experience in forest firefighting and practical training in forest fire suppression, which will help to effectively increase the level of readiness and response to emergencies in the Exclusion Zone during the fire hazard period," – Mykhailo Baitala, acting Head of the Department for the provision of barrier functions of the Exclusion Zone, Nature Reserve Fund, radiation safety, labor protection and civil protection, said.

During the theoretical part of the training, REEFMC staff presented their recommendations on the strategy and tactical methods of forest fire extinguishing taking into account the conditions of radiation contamination of the territory and the features of prediction of fire behavior on the basis of weather, topographical conditions and characteristics of combustible materials. In addition, specialists also paid attention to the safety of firefighters during extinguishing and provision of medical assistance.

All theoretical materials in compressed form are contained in the Ukrainian of the fire pocket manual, developed as an analogue of the American "Incident Respond Pocket Guide" of the US Forest Service.
During the second part of the training, firefighters were able to consolidate their acquired knowledge and practice the course of forest fires on the territory of the Exclusion Zone. In particular, the participants of the training session had to adopt and substantiate the procedures for ensuring personal safety during the extinguishing of fires of various levels of difficulty, to predict the behavior of the fire based on the assessment of weather data, relief and combustible materials, and to choose strategies, tactics and methods of extinguishing based on given by trainers fire characteristics.

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