Firefighters accidentally fight fire with fire


Wash. firefighters mistakenly pump jet fuel on fire instead of water.

The Washington State Patrol is investigating a serious mishap that occurred Oct. 25th at its fire training academy in North Bend.

During a training exercise, firefighters mistakenly pumped jet fuel instead of water onto a flaming mock-up of an airplane crash.

Calkins said investigators believe that the academy’s oil/water separator – which recycles the water used for fire training exercises – did not correctly filter the jet fuel used for the exercise from the reclaimed water.

Calkins said an expert hired by WSP is investigating whether the 1990’s oil/water separator malfunctioned or whether academy employees did not operate it correctly.

A mishap that could have ended in great tragedy. Luckily no one was seriously injured, two firefighters went to the hospital with minor burns.

Tip: Matt Crowley

  3 comments for “Firefighters accidentally fight fire with fire

  1. Nos482
    December 16, 2013 at 1:05 PM

    They sure won’t make that mistake again.
    So I’d say, the exercise was a complete success.

  2. December 16, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    Glad to see they are getting good training! Seems like training is what is needed … and testing out the water system …

    BTW this is close to where I live. I’m really glad there are good training facilities for firefighters. Stupid stuff DOES happen in any profession, but training for it prevents the worst of it from happening in real life. Captain Sully Sullenberger did a great landing in a river … but he was trained well and so was his crew. An even better example is the movie “Apollo 13” which shows some of the stuff they put the astronauts through.

  3. eddi
    December 17, 2013 at 2:03 AM

    Fortunately the recycled water is only used in the training area. The nightmare scenario this creates in people’s minds is a no-go, lucky for all concerned.

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