Over the weekend, approximately 20 firefighters from Hancock and Brooke counties came together for a very important purpose.
The volunteer firefighters, from communities as far north as Chester and south to Bethany, spent the time learning a variety of rescue and other firefighting operations, not only to maintain the skills they use to protect all of our lives, but also to learn more about the operations of other area departments in an effort to better work together.
Any opportunity for our local firefighters, whether paid or volunteer, to train and better hone their skills is good for them and for our communities. The better their skills, the better they are able to offer protection from fires, accidents and other emergencies.
With almost all fire departments in our area being volunteer, there often is the need for multiple departments to be called to the scene of an emergency, which means firefighters must know each other and how to work together.
One department may have a piece of equipment the others don't, for example, or one might have access to more manpower if the need arises. Others, meanwhile, might have a different skill set that could come in handy in a given situation. By training together and learning about each other's strengths and weaknesses, our local fire departments are becoming better prepared for all possibilities.
We applaud those firefighters who were able to take part in Sunday's training, and hope more opportunities take place in the future.