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Dec 17, 1999

Fifteen new firefighters graduate

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Fifteen trainees graduated from the National Fire Service third basic training course this afternoon. Prior to the course, none of the participants had any experience in firefighting and it is the first time in Belize’s history that the service will have two full time female firefighters. News Five attended the passing out ceremony this evening at the National Fire Service headquarters. Not only did we get an opportunity to speak with the two courageous women Shernick Miller and Eldorah Chacon, we also found out that the service has received a handsome supply of much needed equipment.

Q: “Now that you women have successfully completed the course, was it difficult?”

Shernick Miller, Firefighter

“Yes.”

Q: “Tell me about it. What part was difficult?”

Shernick Miller

“To get up five o’clock in the morning to run, when you’re to run the hose but we got through.”

Q: “How about you?”

Eldorah Chacon, Firefighter

“The hardest part was being in the sun training with the old kits that we had. Those were much heavier than these.”

Q: “What part of the course did you find most interesting?”

Shernick Miller

“Breathing apparatus.”

Q: “How about you?”

Eldorah Chacon

“I was familiar with most of it but to me all of it was interesting.”

Q: “What advice do you have for women who may be thinking about joining the Fire Service?”

Eldorah Chacon

“If they think or they feel that they have the capability to go through it they just step up to it.”

Henry Baizar, Fire Chief

“I think they performed well. I think over say, seventy-five percent of the guys made an average of say maybe eighty-five – ninety percent on the course. So I would say they did actually well.”

Q: “And I guess you are equally proud of the two female firefighters?”

Henry Baizar

“Oh yeah, one of them did extremely well. Her grade is between eighty and ninety or something like that.”

Q: “Mr. Baizar, I understand that the Fire Service received some new equipment?”

Henry Baizar

“Yes, we just received today some protective clothing about a hundred sets, that’s the jackets, pants and helmets likewise. That’s another hundred sets of helmets.”

Q: “And I understand that some money has already been allocated for some breathing apparatus?”

Henry Baizar

“Yes, some money has been allocated for some breathing apparatus. We will get some more of those probably early in the New Year.”

Since April, 1997, the National Fire Service has conducted three training courses every year.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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