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Madison firefighters train in urban search, rescue

MADISON – Firefighters with Madison Fire and Rescue Department participated with Alabama Task Force 3 in conducting a full-scale training exercise on Feb. 27.

The training was held at Guntersville State Park, 1155 Lodge Drive. “We covered the use of GPS and Wide Area Search for victims,” Capt. Michael Sedlacek said. Sedlacek is Captain of Community Relations with the Madison department.

“The (training) ran from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with the afternoon consisting of a Field Recon exercise,” Sedlacek said.

Alabama Task Force 3 or ALTF3 is a state-level Urban Search and Rescue team. The team has members from fire departments in Madison, Decatur, Boaz, Fort Payne, Arab, Albertville, Cullman, Guntersville and at Redstone Arsenal.

Training regularly as a team is important for the Madison firefighters to optimize their large variety of skill sets. “With tornado season approaching, GPS training is vital in our search efforts and for areas we may not be familiar with,” Task Force Leader Dustin Spires said.

“The task force remains committed to maintaining our standard of training and hazard mitigation proficiency,” Sedlacek said.

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