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Published December 08, 2012, 09:40 PM

A planned house fire in Crookston helps firefighters in training

Crookston, MN (WDAY TV) -- And to battle a blaze, like that one in Bemidji, you have to know what you're doing. Crews set a house in Crookston on fire today, part of hands-on training for new firefighters and students.

By: Kayla Strayer, WDAZ, WDAY

Crookston, MN (WDAY TV) -- And to battle a blaze, like that one in Bemidji, you have to know what you're doing. Crews set a house in Crookston on fire today, part of hands-on training for new firefighters and students.

Rick Loveland, Fire Program Manager for MSCTC, Moorhead: "We're doing a live burn evolution. It's not very often we get a chance to do this."

Only about 20 area houses are donated for fire training each year. He says this provides the best training possible for students.

Rick "We can talk about all the different aspects of firefighting, but until they actually experience the real process of what actually they're going to be encountering, there's nothing that can describe it and there's no way to explain it in a classroom."

About a dozen students got to experience their first house blaze.

Jacob Hasson, student: "We're letting the fire build up...experience the heat, then we put it out pretty quick with steam. We learn how a gallon of water can put out an entire room....Training in a mock building really doesn't do justice, especially after being in there."

The fact that it's a planned fire doesn't make it any less dangerous.

Rick: "This is by far the most dangerous training that we do, but it's also the most valuable training that we do."

Several bystanders braved the cold to watch the action, including one familiar with the home.

Duane Stinar, former owner: "This is my house we're burning down."

The former owner of the house lived here for 50 years, and was here today. He said memories of raising his children here flooded his mind as he watched it burn to the ground.

Duane: "Sad but yet I'm kind of glad. I didn't want anybody else to live there. It was my house, get rid of it, I got the memories."

Debris from training like this goes to a landfill or gets buried on site.

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