Willamette West Habitat for Humanity
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BraunerBrook is named in appreciation of Ed and Ellen Brauner’s long time service on the Board and Committees.

On February 13th 2010 the Hillsboro Fire Department had training exercises on a building that needed to be removed before development could start on the property.

The Burn to Learn program at Hillsboro Fire Department is extremely valuable to our firefighters’ development and training. As you know, property owners with structures that they plan to demolish contract with HFD to conduct training drills in the home. This provides firefighters with live fire experience in a controlled situation, but in a very realistic environment. At the same time, it often saves the property owner the expense of demolition of the structure and hauling a significant amount of debris to landfills. This is truly a win-win situation for the property owner and the Fire Department and the City of Hillsboro.

Lieutenant Scott Stutzman was instrumental in coordinating the Maple Street Burn to Learn. Here is what he had to say about it:
“Homes such as the one donated by Habitat for Humanity are so important to the Hillsboro Fire Department and the fire service in general. They not only offer a valuable training experience for new recruits just entering the fire service, but also offer that same training opportunity for more seasoned firefighters that they may not otherwise receive in that setting.

The Burn-to Learn offered four of our newest members the opportunity to practice their new skills in a controlled fire environment under the supervision of seasoned Firefighters and Company Officers. Some of these skills were outlined in Training Objectives in a detailed IAP (Incident Action Plan) they included such things as; Safety, Accountability, Communications, Fire Control, use of hand lines and, Ventilation to name just a few.  This type of training gives the Recruits a “real-life picture” of fire besides just talking, teaching from curriculum, or watching videos.”

During the weeks (and months, in this case) prior to the Burn to Learn, Hillsboro Fire Department conducted the following drills:

  • Fire Attack drills with hose deployment,
  • Residential Search and Rescue drills for trapped victims,
  • Ladder drills,
  • R.I.T. (Rapid Intervention Team) drills,
  • PPV (Positive Pressure Ventilation) drills,
  • Building Construction familiarization,
  • Fire Investigation and burn patterns (Taught by Fire Prevention),
  • and of course our Live Fire Burn-to-Learn.

The four new recruits were 2-1/2 months into a 12-month probation when they participated in the burn-to- learn and had demonstrated proficiency in a number of Firefighter 1 tasks. All had been hired with some firefighting experience. The Burn-to-learn also offered the Hillsboro Volunteer Firefighters an opportunity to participate. They were included in the different fire problems and got to practice their skills under the same conditions. They also were instrumental in preparing the “Burn house” for the live fire training.