VIDEO: Cal Fire is racing the clock to get firefighter trainees the experience they need for the coming fire season.
A big part of that is live fire training, but they can only schedule such training when weather conditions allow.
“This is an excellent way for them to learn versus to learn on the job where they’re on a hostile fire,” explained Cal Fire Battalion Chief Mark Brunton at a fire training for recruits just outside of Coloma.
This week, Cal Fire went to maximum staffing of its fire units, several weeks earlier than normal. It will need to season each recruit so they can be deployed. For new recruits, live fire training is a must, and for many of them, it could be a make-or-break situation. Facing live flames and the physical exertion required to haul gear into the wildlands takes its toll.