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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 February 2008, 14:17 GMT
Fire students to get own engine
Generic picture of fire hoses
Youngsters learn the basics of firefighting on the course
A fire and rescue engine which has been specifically built to train school-age youngsters in the art of tackling fires is being unveiled in West Yorkshire.

The engine has been built by specialist companies along with experts from the fire service.

It features extending ladders, a cab to house five people along with equipment stored in regular service appliances.

Youngsters from schools across the county will be able to attend the Young Firefighters' course in Wakefield.

Martin Hoole, Youth Training Co-ordinator for West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue said: "The Young Firefighters scheme has been so well received throughout West Yorkshire that we decided to start looking at developing a dedicated appliance which is more suitable for younger people and one which suits the needs of the course.

Practical lessons

"The youngsters are very proud to have their own appliance and are ready to showcase it and demonstrate the skills they have acquired.

"We hope this will be the first of many and that every fire station which runs the Young Firefighters course will eventually have its own purpose-built appliance."

The scheme involves about 360 students in 34 schools across the county.

The two-year course, which starts in year 10 (pupils aged about 14 or 15 years old), involves practical lessons in breathing apparatus, pumping appliances, fire safety and they also learn life skills.

Lessons take place in a dedicated classroom at their local fire station. Students work towards a BTEC Level Two qualification in basic firefighting.

Students from the David Young Community Academy, Temple Moor High School, Airedale High School, Kettlethorpe High School, Crofton High School, Normanton Freeston High School and Wakefield City High School will use the new appliance to demonstrate the skills they have learned on the course.

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