CARLOW FIRE and Rescue Service burned off the competition at the weekend to win first place in the world extrication challenge in London.
The challenges took place over three days at the Excel Centre and saw rescue teams from around the globe show the world what they’re capable of.
The strong Carlow team arrived back to a hero’s welcome, with celebrations among their family, friends and chief fire officer Ger Guerin and colleagues following their fantastic win in London.
The team included incident commander John Comerford,firefighter/medic Paul Curran, firefighters Alan Owens, Andrew Fisher, Anthony Kirwan and Darren Somers. Assistant chief fire officer Michael Gahan, also of Carlow County Fire and Rescue Service, attended the event in his capacity as world extrication assessor.
The skills needed by firefighters to cut people out of road traffic collisions or the care given to those who are injured at the scene of an accident can literally be a matter or life or death. The challenges were a chance for fire crews to practice and improve these vital skills.
The team from Carlow was one of four from Ireland that travelled to the prestigious event.
The Carlow team claimed first place in the world in the ten-minute rapid extrication scenario, which is one of the three categories judged during the challenge.
Carlow are now ranked 11th overall in the world, following a weekend of high drama which saw the very best across the globe compete for the coveted awards.
“I am very proud of what the team has achieved this weekend,” said John Comerford, Carlow incident commander station officer.
“It would not have been possible without the support and encouragement from our colleagues in the fire and rescue service, our families and Carlow Local Authorities,” he added.