Pittsburg Fire Department conducts training at McDonalds - KOAM TV 7

Pittsburg Fire Department conducts training at McDonalds building


It can take just a few minutes for a building to go up in smoke, as many on-lookers in Pittsburg witnessed this morning at the McDonald's building along Broadway. The good news? It was all for training. The demonstration showed how a lethal fire can happen to any structure at any time.

The firefighters battled three different scenarios in the smoke-filled building. Pittsburg Fire Chief Mike Simons explains how the scenarios all relate to real life, and how it's something every firefighter needs to be prepared for.

"We evacuated the person, the manager of the building, but yet one of our firefighters have been displaced and gotten lost, so we activated a mayday system, where we basically go in to rescue our own firefighter." says Pittsburg Fire Chief, Mike Simons.

The other demonstrations included a search and rescue for a manager trapped in the office, and a search and rescue for a manager trapped in the basement.


All rescues were successful for the department...giving fire fighters a feel for what they could face in a real structure fire.

"We were able to smoke this building up in the inside to complete zero visibility. Which is basically the conditions you have in real fires, you have no visibility whatsoever." Simons says.

We were able to take our camera inside the smoke-filled building as fighters completed their scenarios...and it was difficult to see more than a few feet in front of our gear.

Building CEO, Wes Irvin of Nicols Management says the idea came to life when he saw a previous demonstration done by crews across the state. With the building already in the process of being rebuilt, he says now is the perfect time to bring the training here.

"In our facility, whenever we do have something like this the first thing is to make sure everyone gets out and we call 911 to get the fire department out here. But the first thing is the safety of our crew." Irvin says.

Even with the frigid temperatures, training for these guys doesn't stop once the blaze is out. Upon completion of the fire, Simons and his crew reviewed structural details and logistics.\

"The lightweight construction technology that's used in these buildings...Many of these lightweight commercial buildings like McDonalds, taco bells, subways, are all designed the same. So, we're gonna review that and emphasize issue of that." Simons says.

The McDonalds building on Broadway will be formally torn down on Monday to begin the rebuilding process.

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