More than 60 level two and three uniformed protective services students at West Nottinghamshire College were led through a series of simulated exercises designed to test their fitness, strength, manual dexterity and confidence levels.
A crew from Mansfield Fire Station’s Blue Watch spent three days at the college’s Derby Road campus in Mansfield, to give students an insight into the role, highlight the career opportunities available, and take them through job-related tests.
Exercises included ‘hose-running’, which involved quickly unrolling hoses used to tackle a fire, and using a throw line, a rescue device used to assist someone experiencing difficulty in water.
Students also had the chance to take a look around the crew’s fire engine and try on breathing apparatus, as well as completing a bleep test, used by Nottinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service to test people’s cardiovascular fitness and stamina.
Firefighter Jim Broomhead, who led the activities, said: “By doing these activities, some of them may decide a role in the fire service is what they want, so it gives them an insight into their future career.
"Those who want to go into other emergency services or the armed forces can still draw on those experiences when undergoing their tests, so it’s useful to all students.
“Another benefit of visits such as these is the opportunity to promote general fire safety awareness.”
Student Dillon Baker, aged 17, said: “I really enjoyed it – not only the drills, but also all the questions we were able to ask.”
Charlie-Francis Massey, also 17, said: “It was inspirational because we got to see what firefighters do. You realise how hard their job is and what the physical demands are. They have to have a lot of strength to do what they need to do, particularly carrying the breathing equipment.”
Alan Viggers, public services teacher, said: “This was an excellent opportunity for students to understand what is required to become employed within the fire and rescue service. It was wonderful to see the firefighters pass on their skills, knowledge and professionalism to our learners, who threw themselves into the tasks with enthusiasm and gained an invaluable understanding of the role.”