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Come On Baby, Light My Fire


Article by: Jason B. Houlihan

Even with temperatures in the 60s, this Valentine’s Day was on fire at Del Mar College’s West Campus. Dressed in full firefighting gear, 19 students with the College’s Regional Fire Academy demonstrated the skills they’ve learned to extinguish flames overtaking various practice props. The cadets make up the Spring Class of 2018.

Cadets extinguished LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) live burns by suppressing flames of a burning car and dumpster, along with props that mimicked those devices used in a refinery setting––including a liquid fuel spill and an LPG tank. During the exercises, cadets wore full personal protective equipment, including a self-contained breathing apparatus.

Faculty with the College’s Department of Public Safety Education watched to see if these future firefighters violated any safety issues and extinguished the fires correctly.

Walter Thieme, associate professor and director of the DMC Regional Fire Academy, said that the exercises are a requirement for students to fulfill all aspects of firefighting operations for certification by the Texas Commission on Fire Protection.

Among skills individuals learn through the DMC Regional Fire Academy are the mechanics of saving a life using Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation, or CPR, including how to count chest compressions and perform an exercise administering oxygen to mannequins. Students also learn basic first aid and receive instruction about fire behavior, rappelling and the utilization of a self-contained breathing apparatus.

More information about Del Mar College’s Fire Science Academy is available by visiting www.delmar.edu/fire_science/fire_science.aspx.


About Del Mar College

Del Mar College empowers students to achieve their dreams. We offer quality programs, individual attention, outstanding instruction through faculty with real-world experience and affordable costs to credit and noncredit students in Corpus Christi and the South Texas Coastal Bend area. Nationally recognized while locally focused, we’re ranked in the top two percent of community colleges in the country granting associate degrees to Hispanic students (Community College Week). Del Mar College focuses on offering our students programs that match current or emerging career opportunities. Whether students are interested in the fine arts, sciences, business, occupational or technical areas, students get the education they need for the future they want at Del Mar College.