A special firefighting school is underway at the Fire Service Training Bureau in Ames the next few days. John McPhee is coordinating the training that teaches power plant operators to fight fires fueled by liquefied natural gas. McPhee says it takes some special knowledge to fight the natural gas fires.He says the gas comes out at a much cooler temperature and burns a lot hotter and cleaner, making it difficult to see. He says the actual firefighting techniques are similar to other fires, but there are things you need to know to fight them safely. McPhee says there are a number of plants that use natural gas.He says it’s a commonly used heating material, and he says the people in the plants need to know how to handle the fires in the event of a mishap.The school in Ames is one of only two in the country that offer the training.He says they begin with using fire extinguishers all the way up to fighting a training fire of spilled natural gas. McPhee says the school is offered once a year and includes people from several states and Canada. He says plant operators are required to go through the training once every two years.
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