CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas, Nov. 27, 2015 —
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 53 employees were killed by workplace fires in 2014. Although the number of fire-related fatalities has dropped 35 percent from 2013 to 2014, one fatality is too many.
In order to ensure DLA Distribution Corpus Christi, Texas, employees never become one of the statistics, safety specialists David Wilson and Scott Peterson developed a comprehensive fire safety program, which includes hands-on fire extinguisher training.
With the assistance of Naval Air Station fire inspector Maurice Phillips, the distribution center conducted their annual fire extinguisher training on Nov. 17. The training was composed of a brief presentation followed by a hands-on activity. “Every successful program should combine classroom and hands-on instructional elements,” explained Wilson.
The presentation portion of the training covered “must know” subjects such as: sources of fire, classes of fire, types of extinguishers, and, of course, the acronym PASS. PASS stands for Pull, Aim, Squeeze, and Sweep; an easy way to remember how to properly operate a fire extinguisher.
Once the presentation was complete, participants were given the opportunity to put what they learned to the test. The hands-on portion of the training was conducted using the Naval Air Station Fire Department’s fire simulator. The simulator allows the participant to use the PASS acronym to knock down an incipient stage fire.
Participant James Purser stated, “The simulator is cool. It really allows you to put what you learned into action.”
Overall, 77 DLA Distribution Corpus Christi employees completed the annual training, thereby reducing the overall potential for one of them to become a statistic.
“We are not training [employees] to become firefighters, but we want [them] to feel confident, should they need to operate an extinguisher and know when to evacuate,” said Peterson.