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Indianapolis Professional Firefighters show dangers of the job through “Fire Ops 101”

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LAWRENCE, Ind. - Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a firefighter, even for a day?

Today, a handful of civilians and elected officials will have the chance thanks to "Fire Ops 101."

Indianapolis Professional Firefighters Local 416 have held this event every year since 2015. They hope participants will gain perspective about the dangers of the job, and firefighters' needs.

Participants will be given the opportunity to put on a protective suits and run through a number of simulations.

Those scenarios include responding to emergency overdose calls, search and rescue inside a burning building, a 100-foot ladder climb, extricating trapped victim of car crashes, and fighting a live fire on the second floor of the building.

Participants will wear breathing apparatus during search and rescue. The exercise will  place participants inside a smoke-filled room with virtually no visibility. They will work to locate and remove a victim.

"It's hard to explain what it is we do," says Local 416 president, Hank Harris.

They prefer hands-on demonstrations.

"When we as the Local, or as chiefs go to the decision makers and are asking for staffing or new equipment or new breathing apparatus, they get a real appreciation for why that is we are asking for that," Harris says. "They can actually relate back to that."

While each of the simulations are controlled, Harris says they want it to be as real as possible. He says they don't push people too hard, but it is nothing short of intense.

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