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Students get involved with Northants Rescue Teams Evacuation Training


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On Wednesday 6th May Tresham hosted an ‘Evacuation Training Exercise’ at Kettering campus for the local Fire and Rescue services involving the key emergency services across the county. The college was approached by Graham Ravenscroft, Watch Manager from Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service and the organiser of the exercise, to host a training activity using the college’s plane fuselage facility and invited students to take part in a variety of roles. A total of 60 students from Travel and Tourism and Uniformed Public Services were able to get involved acting as casualties with Travel and Tourism students demonstrating a controlled emergency evacuation of an aircraft.

The multi-agency training involved local Fire and Rescue Services from Corby, Kettering, Rothwell and Moulton as well as from the St. Johns Ambulance, Northants Police, Police Cadets and Northants Fire Dogs. This multi-agency training allows members to improve effectiveness and efficiency of emergency responses to incidents and is an opportunity for all emergency services to review collaborative ways of working together.

The exercise provided a realistic scenario of a passenger aircraft that had been forced to make an emergency landing. The plane fuselage was filled with smoke and the sixty ‘passengers’ needed evacuating. Due to the nature of the staged landing several passengers sustained injuries with a number of passengers and cabin crew needing rescuing. The Fire and Rescue Services dealt with fire associated with an aircraft, rescue of passengers and handling the large numbers of people in a distressed state.

The St. Johns Ambulance crew were responsible for supporting the emergency services, provide care and medical treatment. Northants Police and the Police Cadets managed the co-ordination of all emergency services and secured, protected and preserved the scene from onlookers.

Mick Berry, Kettering Fire Station Manager said This exercise has given us an opportunity for a realistic and controlled training session with a multi-agency approach. We have been able to bring three of the main services together for a beneficial training exercise and to work on our partnership and interaction. It also gave Tresham the opportunity to allow their students to test their procedures and skills they’ve learnt on their courses. We often complete training exercises at our fire stations but are constantly looking for new local venues to complete realistic training exercises with different surroundings. We would definitely approach Tresham again for another realistic training exercise whether this is using their plane fuselage again or a large inside space like their Sports Hall. The training was realistic with smoke pouring out the plane fuselage and the reaction of the students on and off the plane.” 

Shaun Richards, 17, studying BTEC Extended Diploma in Public Services said “I thought the evacuation procedure was a great experience. It taught me a lot about how the emergency services would deal with an emergency and helped a lot with my course.”

Clive Skingsley, Uniformed Public Services Tutor at Tresham said:  “This training exercise alongside the main fire and rescue services has been a fantastic opportunity for our students to gain additional experience that will help them when applying for work in the services or to progress into university. Our links with the local emergency services continues to grow and for our students to get the chance to work alongside and speak to those who are in the industry they want to progress into is a great way for them to get the insight into their future careers. We look forward to working with the teams again in the future!

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