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Press Release - Fire crews exercise at significant heritage building
Posted on 03/07/2017

Fire crews will be carrying out at exercise at one of the region’s most significant heritage properties on Tuesday 4 July.

Exercise Firewater II will be held at Montacute House in Somerset to test the firefighters response to an incident at a historic building.

Fire appliances will be attending from Yeovil, Martock, Crewkerne, and Street, joined by special appliances from Yeovil and Honiton.

Exercise organiser Watch Manager Ian Balfour, of Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service, said: “We’d like to thank the National Trust for allowing us to use their beautiful building to test our firefighting techniques at important heritage sites. We couldn’t carry out this scale of exercise without the participation of the National Trust staff and volunteers and the enthusiasm of the fire crews.

“Exercises are important to validate what we do in a safe environment and it’s always useful to learn more about how we work in certain situations.”

The procedures which will be tested during the exercise include: breathing apparatus search and rescue procedures, simulated external and internal firefighting, availability of water supplies and working with National Trust colleagues and non-fire service personnel within the risk area.

Firefighting and salvage operations will have to take account of the many priceless items stored within the Elizabethan mansion.

Keith Bacon, Montacute House Facilities Manager, said: “This pre-planned exercise will give us the chance to test our procedures and build on our strong relationship with local firefighters.

“Of course, we hope that nothing like this ever happens, but we have to be prepared to deal with the worst case scenario.”

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