Firefighters take out $1-million Striker vehicle to combat 50-foot, jet fuel-fed flames
Whether it lands on the ground or falls from the sky, if an aircraft looks like the training frame southeast of the Boise Airport did Thursday afternoon, first-responders likely find themselves responding to a mass-casualty situation. Video by IdahoOnYourSide.comvideo
Whether it lands on the ground or falls from the sky, if an aircraft looks like the training frame southeast of the Boise Airport did Thursday afternoon, first-responders likely find themselves responding to a mass-casualty situation.
“This would be a very bad accident,” Boise Battalion Chief Jake Ellis said.
Combusting jet fuel surrounding a plane full of people (simulated Thursday with everything but the people) also demands firefighters exercise different tactics and use different tactics.
Boise Fire’s $1-million Striker vehicle can inject foam, water and a dry chemical into a fire all at the same time. It boasts thermal imaging, military GPS for low visibility and a puncture-nozzle to pierce an aircraft’s skin and extinguish the flames within.
Because – and thankfully – disasters like the one simulated southeast of Boise Thursday happen so infrequently, firefighters don’t often get to take the Striker out for a spin.
Boise teams used the Thursday's drilling to hone their skills, but also admitted – even for those who serve and protect – when no lives or buildings are at stake Thursday wasn't a bad day at the office.
“You know,” Eliss said, “it is a lot of fun.”