Rapid Intervention Team
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Rapid Intervention Team


REPORTER: A FIREFIGHTER’S DUTY IS TO RUSH
IN TO THE FACE OF DANGER, PUT OUT FIRES, AND SAVE THE LIVES OF OTHERS. BUT WHAT HAPPENS
WHEN THAT DANGER GETS TO BE TOO MUCH, AND THE RESCUERS NEED RESCUING? WILL KING: EVERY
YEAR WE HAVE A HUNDRED LINE-OF-DUTY DEATHS AVERAGE ACROSS THE COUNTRY FROM FIREFIGHTERS,
SO THAT’S WHAT WE’RE HERE FOR IS TO TRY TO GIVE THE GUYS THE ABILITY AND THE SKILLSET
TO LIMIT THAT NUMBER AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE. REPORTER: IT’S A CONCEPT CALLED THE RAPID
INTERVENTION TEAM OR RIT, AND INSTRUCTORS FROM THE ALABAMA FIRE COLLEGE TRAVELED ALL
THE WAY TO JAPAN TO TEACH MISAWA’S FIREFIGHTERS WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT. BRANDON STRICKLAND:
REALLY THIS IS A CLASS CENTERED AROUND FIREFIGHTERS. MOST OF THE TRAINING THAT WE DO AS FIREMEN
IS ABOUT RESCUING CIVILIANS, AND THE CONCEPT OF RESCUING DOWNED FIREMEN IS SOMETHING THAT
A LOT OF PLACES JUST AREN’T FAMILIAR WITH. SO WE WANT THEM TO HAVE THE TOOLS AND THE
SKILLS THAT THEY NEED TO BE ABLE TO SUCCESSFULLY RESCUE THEIR BROTHERS WHEN THEY’RE IN TROUBLE.
REPORTER: THESE AIRMEN LEARNED TECHNIQUES THEY MAY NOT HAVE SEEN BEFORE, BUT WILL NOW
BE ABLE TO USE NOT ONLY IF ONE OF THEIR BROTHERS GOES DOWN, BUT ALSO IF THEY FIND THEMSELVES
TRAPPED. A1C TATE: I�VE LEARNED A LOT. SINCE I’VE GOTTEN HERE, THIS IS DEFINITELY ONE
OF THE BETTER CLASSES I�VE TAKEN SO FAR. IT’S DIFFERENT BECAUSE WE HAVE SAFETY PROCEDURES
THAT WE GO THROUGH, BUT WITH THIS RIT CLASS IT’S BASICALLY: YOU’RE TRAPPED. GET OUT.
YOU’RE NOT WORRIED ABOUT THE DIFFERENT STEPS, YOU’RE WORRIED ABOUT JUST GETTING YOURSELF
OUT AND THAT’S A REAL-LIFE SITUATION SO I FEEL LIKE THIS HAS BEEN VERY SUCCESSFUL
SO FAR. REPORTER: THE INSTRUCTORS BROUGHT A NON-MILITARY PERSPECTIVE AND WANTED TO MAKE
THIS TRAINING AS REALISTIC AS POSSIBLE, BECAUSE IN AN EMERGENCY SITUATION, IT’S ABOUT REACTING
QUICKLY AND SAVING LIVES. WILL KING: PEOPLE HAVE SEEN ON THE NEWS FIREMEN THAT MAY DIE
IN A COLLAPSE. WHAT WE’RE DOING THIS WEEK IS TRAINING OUR GUYS HOW TO GET THEM OUT OF
THAT SITUATION TO PREVENT THE DEATH OF OUR FIREFIGHTERS. THAT�S THE BIGGEST THING IF
YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT THE SKILLS THAT WE’RE DOING, JUST KNOWING THAT THE TRAINING IS TOTALLY
KEYED-IN ON HOW TO SAVE OUR OWN GUYS, THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT WE’RE DOING THIS WEEK. REPORTER:
PETTY OFFICER BEN LARSCHEID, MISAWA AIR BASE, JAPAN.

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