Firefighters are challenged everyday with the calls they receive, literally anything can happen and they have to be ready for that. That’s where their training comes in, not just from the fire academy but also from continued training on and off-site – even if it’s in 48 degree water.
Last week 80 members of the Revere Fire Department headed to Revere Beach near the Shirley Street bathhouse, on a chilly, windy day to learn about water rescues and how to work with the department’s new Zodiac boat. Ready in his dry suit to great them, Firefighter Ed Steriti let them know this type of rescue can happen anytime.
Steriti, a water rescue trainer and member of the Revere Fire Department, said they try to do this training every year when the beach is less active.
Capt. Mark Wolfgang said in the last 15 years the Revere Fire Department has been stepping up its training. New dry suits, helmets, flotation devices were purchased by the department last year. The new Zodiac boat and 30 horsepower engine was purchased recently with Homeland Security funds
“We come out here quite a bit in the summer,” he said, for medical aid calls and people trapped by the tide on the jetty.
The trainer’s first piece of advice to his fellow fighters was, “If God meant for use to be in the water he’d have given us gills.” His next instruction was to work together as a team.
Not only dies this training come in handy for Revere, it also helps members of the Metropolitan Boston Swift Water Rescue Team, like Steriti and Lt. Michael Connolly Jr. They can be deployed to Boston or New Hampshire at any time.