First responders never know what their work day is going to look like. But, they can prepare for scenarios and ensure they’re equipped with the right tools.
At the Harrison Fire Department, the annual Fourth of July fireworks show is a scenario to count on. To prepare, a training was provided free of charge jointly by Pyrotecnico trainers and fireworks display provider and Tri-State 1st Responders Association. The City of Harrison and Harrison Fire Department provided the location, facility and support. Training was provided to approximately 40 personnel from area fire departments.
Throughout the day, fire officials reviewed State of Ohio laws regarding fireworks shows. The Department is tasked with ensuring compliance so that the show is conducted in a safe manner. That entails a permitting process, site plans, pre-event site visit, day-of inspection and post-event procedures.
Since the training involved the handling and inspection of live fireworks, the community was treated to “Pyroween,” a musical fireworks show at dusk. Click to watch a video of the fireworks show on Facebook.
The fireworks training might seem like a walk in the park compared to scenarios first responders face on daily basis. Fire Chief Rob Hursong said the volume of emergency runs has increased 21 percent from 2021.
Chief Hursong wants to ensure that employees are equipped to take control of their own mental wellness. He recently held a training with a UC Health psychologist and a co-founder from the Tri-State Peer Support Team. The presentation focused on stress management, mental health, and coping with trauma. Attendees from Harrison Fire Department and other local agencies learned about mental health checkups, breathing exercises and resources available to them.
“The average firefighter’s career is 25 to 30 years,” Hursong said. “I want those years to be a good experience and for that person to have a healthy life afterward.”
The Harrison Fire Department staffs 10 people at two stations each day to provide a high level of firefighting and paramedic services. The department maintains a Class 2 ISO rating.
The "Pyroween" musical fireworks Oct. 30 was donated by Pyrotecnico.