VIDEO: Ask any fire department chief and they will tell you, burning a building on purpose has become much harder to do over the years. Why would a department want to burn a building on purpose? Chief B.J. DeMaa of the Waupun fire department says it is for training firefighters. “The need to provide live-fire training is paramount, as it provides an opportunity for firefighters to practice situational awareness, decision making, and a multitude of other skills,” DeMaa says.