Training Day at the Firehouse

A group of firefighter cadets practice how to breach through a roof with a chainsaw.

A group of firefighter cadets practice how to breach through a roof with a chainsaw.

What better way to enjoy the sweet UV rays than to spend the day outdoors practicing and training in the art of firefighting? A number of cadets sat atop a roof at the San Francisco Fire Department Training Facility at 19th and Folsom on Tuesday, learning the proper way to use a chainsaw to breach through a roof. The move is often used to create ventilation during a blaze.

Kevin Day (left), a probationary firefighter with SFFD Unit 13, practices the aerial test, where a firefighter must operate an engine's ladder and climb it.

After the cadets go through a rigorous training, they become probationary firefighters, at which point they are assigned to a firehouse and spend a year working on a fire engine, a fire truck and an ambulance. Before becoming full-fledged firefighters, though, they must pass a number of tests, one of which is an aerial test in which the probationary firefighter must position a fire engine’s ladder at three windows on a building’s fourth story, a fire escape and, sometimes, the roof.

Oh, and they have to climb the ladder, too. Kevin Day, a probationary firefighter with downtown San Francisco’s Unit 13, spent some time testing his skills today.

Firefighters earn $74,776 to $104,702 per year.

Firefighters get to climb that ladder during their training. Bet you wish you could, too.

Filed under: SNAPS, Today's Mission

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