Dunedin Firefighters Train to Survive Fall in Potential Marina Blaze

"It's not easy. ... We all weigh about 3 to 400 pounds when we're soaking wet in this water so, you're not getting out by yourself," Dunedin Fire Lt. Shale Saeger said.

It's happened to one of their own before.

A north county firefighter fell into the water while battling a marina blaze. Thankfully, he survived to tell the tale because of basic lifesaving techniques he learned in training like that at Dunedin Municipal Marina this week.

Lt. Shale Saeger of Dunedin Fire Station 61 participated on the first day of a six-day training session for firefighters from Dunedin, Tarpon Springs, Palm Harbor, Eastlake, Oldsmar and Safety Harbor.

Dunedin fire officials are using the May 14 blaze at Tarpon Springs Sponge Docks as prime examples of the importance of preparing for the case of a water-fallen firefighter as part of the joint department, twice-daily firefighter safety and survival training Aug. 14 through 22. 

Saeger said he was blown away at how demanding the training is.

"It's not easy. ... We all weigh about 3 to 400 pounds when we're soaking wet in this water so, you're not getting out by yourself," Saeger said.

Watch Dunedin Patch editor Katie Dolac participate in one of the firefighter skill stations.
Steve August 15, 2013 at 07:27 PM
Sorry, but ........here we go. Someone who make a living off of the government......but not doing a hell of a lot for it day to day, week after week, .....has to ramp up how dangerous it is ......to justify their existence. Sure it's dangerous, sure it's dangerous to all of us that go out on the Gulf...SO???? No one made us do it!!!
veronica lopez August 16, 2013 at 07:58 AM
Wow Steve! Hope you don't ever need someone to save you or a family member from not only a fire but any medical situation since they are the paramedics that also respond to those calls. (Pinellas county just doesn't have them transport)They are gone from their families 24 hours at a time to help ungrateful people like you all day & night long! They very rarely get to sleep a night through at the station. Find something else to complain about! Thank you to all our firefighters/paramedics & police that work hard to protect us daily!!


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