USS CARL VINSON (NNS) -- To help prepare for damage control readiness, Damage Control Training Team (DCTT) members and other personnel assigned to the USS Carl Vinson participated in a realistic fire simulator at Farrier Firefighting School Nov. 6.
Sailors participated in two different classes, the Basic Shipboard Firefighting Course and the Advanced Shipboard Firefighting Course.
The Basic Shipboard Firefighting Course teaches students to enter and exit various compartments and to combat various classes of fires with the appropriate extinguishing agent while using a breathing apparatus. Personnel in the basic course also reviewed damage control organization, chemistry of firefighting and classification of alpha, bravo, and charlie fires.
Fire Controlman 1st Class Jacob McCawley says the course was an excellent opportunity for all parties involved.
"The Basic Shipboard Firefighting Course was a great refresher for experienced Sailors and a stepping stone for junior Sailors," said McCawley.
The Advanced Shipboard Firefighting Class was a four-day course designed for senior personnel. The course gives as realistic a scenario as possible. This course encompasses all things firefighting including main space firefighting, rapid plotting, symbology, and active de-smoking. When students leave the course students should have a clear understanding of the entire firefighting process. Students are taught to think outside the box and to work as a team.
Farrier Firefighting School's Field Safety Chief Damage Control 1st Class (SW/AW) Shawana Lowder said Sailors must always be prepared for all damage control emergencies.
"[Sailors] are [their] own rescue squad," said Lowder. "When [they're] underway [they] can't call anyone for help. [They] are the first and only line of defense."
Media department's leading petty officer, Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class (AW/SW) Tekeshia Affa said the toughest part was the mass conflagaration drill. During this drill, personnel are required to combat a variety of different fire casualties at the same time. She was the last 'man' standing from her hose team after the drill was over.
"The mass conflagaration drill has an extremely realistic feeling," said Affa. "Although you know it is a controlled fire, you still feel like you're fighting a real fire. You feel the heat. I just continued to fight until I ran out of air."
Carl Vinson will continue to send Sailors to Farrier Firefighting School to help prepare for their upcoming deployment around the horn of South America. Carl Vinson is undergoing a Post Shakedown Availability and Supplemental Restricted Availability at Northrop Grumman.
For more news from USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn70/.