Young fire fighters at Stornoway station

EIGHT young people from Lewis know the drill when it comes to safety after successfully completing a ten-week HIFiReS youth training course run by the Highlands and Islands Fire and Rescue Service at Stornoway Fire Station.

The HIFiReS course is funded by the Big Lottery and supported by Community Education and the Nicolson Institute. The course is designed to equip young people with valuable life skills, including self-discipline and the importance of working as a team.

The young people were fitted with full firefighting kit and were put through their paces at Stornoway Fire Station where they learnt new skills including hose drills, ladder drills, using breathing apparatus, improvisation using all the equipment on the fire tenders and carrying out home fire safety checks.

Representatives from the Army Cadet Force and Northern Constabulary also contributed with First Aid and Road Safety input respectively.

The highlight of the course was when they had the opportunity to go to the airport fire station to put out a controlled aircraft fire.

A presentation night was held on Wednesday March 23 where family, friends, teachers, fire board members and local authority workers came together to celebrate what the young people have achieved over the past ten weeks. Young people gave a demonstration which showed the wide variety of skills which were taught over the course and they were then presented with their certificates.

One young person commented that the course was: “The best experience of my life and if I had the chance I would do it again.” Another said that: “It was amazing and I wish it would go on for longer.” One girl said that: “We learnt a lot from it especially how to co-operate more and work as a team no matter what and support each other.”

Speeches were made by Group Manager Ian Smith, Watch Manager John Campell, Crew Manager Ian Macaulay and Fire Board member Councillor Peter Carlin. SGD. 22365