TR Sailors Hone Skills During At-Sea-Fire-Party Drill

Story Number: NNS130821-02Release Date: 8/21/2013 4:49:00 AM
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By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Stephane Belcher, USS Theodore Roosevelt Public Affairs

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (NNS) -- Sailors executed an at-sea fire-party drill aboard the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) during fast cruise Aug. 20 in Newport News, Va.

At-sea-fire-party drills are simulations that train Sailors to respond to fires or flooding while underway.

The drills are carefully planned to ensure they are executed safely and effectively.

"The ship's fire marshall goes over how we're going to do the drills the week before we go underway," said Damage Controlman Fireman Maria Pogue.

During a drill, Sailors must don a self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), a respirator and other protective gear within two minutes and be on scene in five minutes.

The Damage Control Training Team (DCTT) follows the fire party during the simulation to evaluate how the Sailors are performing.

"DCTT will be on the scene with the hose team and in the locker," said Pogue.

DCTT quizzes Sailors throughout the drill and provides guidance when Sailors need it. The most important thing is making sure Sailors are qualified and improving.

Chief Damage Controlman Conor Flaherty, the assistant DCTT coordinator, said he has noticed vast improvements since he came aboard Theodore Roosevelt three months ago. He said this is because the Sailors aboard Theodore Roosevelt take their training seriously.

"The at-sea fire party has gone above and beyond their training," said Flaherty.

At-sea-fire-party drills are crucial for the ship's operations. These lifelike drills keep the Sailors ready to respond at a moment's notice.

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