Lincoln-Area First Responders Work On Rescue Skills 

First responders in the Lincoln area got together for the first ever Upper Highlands Mutual Fire Aid Winter School.”We have a multitude of fire fighters here from from different departments from the area, and there is four different courses bring taught here this weekend,” said Timothy Peters, public safety instructor of Region III.The weekend long course was a chance for firefighters, officers, and EMTs to get affordable in-depth in their fields.”The overall goal is to increase knowledge and training, and hopefully to reduce the number of injures and deaths the fire fighters possibly could be exposed to when responding to incidents,” said Peters.Incidents like cold water rescue.(Rob Hendrick/Instructor, ice water rescue)”We’re out on this ice on Cold Stream in the Narrows in Lincoln, and they’re learning self-rescue skills and and then how to rescue somebody that’s fallen through the ice,” said Rob Hendrick an instructor in ice water rescue.They learned how to save victims through various methods.”It gives you a better understanding of the conditions of the ice and what’s going on out there,” said Hendrick.Training like this gives them a better sense of what it would be like to rescue victims, and to get more experience in the water themselves.”It’s a lot of fun to do when you’re training, and hopefully, it will come off as successful if it’s need,” said Clifford Sibley, a Burlington fire fighter.”It’s easy to stand and say what to do, but as anybody knows, if you fall through the ice, the first thing you’re going to do is start panicking. The best you do, because you only have a matter of minutes before the cold hits you and the water starts soaking into your clothing, you want to try to wave your hands and holler,” said Hendrick.Dealing with this equipment before an emergency is the objective of the class. “I think it’s a very valuable tool to all of towns around to have somebody available that has the equipment and the knowledge to effect a rescue when it’s needed,” said Sibley.