Lawton firefighter recruits practice burns

Lawton_Lawton firefighter recruits have practiced putting out fires inside buildings all week. This training is a major part of their learning experience.  Instructors said learning about fires is just as important as putting one out. Without knowing how a fire works, they could be adding fuel to the flames. But after finishing their final burn Thursday, recruits are certified level one firefighters.

It wasn't without hard work and some heavy lifting. "We're looking at about an additional 50 to 60 pounds of protective equipment by the time you get your bunker gear on and then you add in your tank which is going to be your air you're bringing in with you," said Lawton Fire Department Assistant Training Officer Jared Williams.

Training instructors say it's the closest they can get to the real thing. "We have fewer and fewer fires these days, which is a good thing cause of fire prevention so we have to try to replicate as much of the real conditions as we can in a training burn."

Burns like these aren't only for new recruits though. Williams said it's a great way to reinforce skills for all of Lawton's firefighters.