Fire Investigation Series: Go Inside the Fire

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If you’ve driven through Beaton Drive in West Fargo, you may have noticed there are ashes where a two story house once stood.


The house was destroyed as part of a fire investigation training course where local departments learned about fire cause and origin.


The West Fargo Fire Department says the burning of the house is giving them very valuable experience.


The city doesn’t have burning buildings often so the department says this burn is crucial for training.


It can start with a small burn to a pillow, and turn into a massive fire consuming a home.


The West Fargo Fire Department is using this house as extra training for their firefighters.

Captain Rory Jorgensen has been with the department for over 20 years and says the burn is important for the newer firefighters.


“I mean it’s the heat and the smoke and the flames. It’s the real deal. I mean, we have a smoke machine but it’s not the heat, it’s not the same and you know, too many people were getting hurt in actual live training burns so it’s a safe way to do it now and you take advantage of what you can, while you can,” said Captain Jorgensen.


The house was recently used for fire investigation training.


Local emergency responders like the Fargo and West Fargo Fire Departments got to go through the training with EFI Global.


A company that investigates fires across the country.


The house is now being burned so members of the West Fargo Fire Department can get extra experience with a building on fire.


“Every time we get called out it’s usually an emergency situation, so this gives firefighters an opportunity to sit back and see how fire develops and things that they should be looking out for when they go into an actual fire,” said West Fargo Fire Department Chief Roy Schaschneider.


The West Fargo Fire Department has nine new rookies and out of the 400 calls last year only three were of burning buildings.


“Most of them are out here this morning so it gives them an opportunity really get broke in good,” said Chief Schaschneider.


After watching the flames, the newer firefighters discuss what they saw.


“We’ll go back to the fire hall and do a debriefing and ask the new guys what they thought, what they saw, what they learned or you know if anybody saw a safety hazard and kind of critique it and you know hopefully somebody takes something back from this,” said Jorgensen.


It’s extra training that will help these men and women better serve their community.


“We don’t have a whole lot of them, to where we can actually get hands on training on,” said Chief Schaschneider.



The three different sessions for the fire investigation benefitted both local departments and EFI Global.


Our local emergency responders got first hand training when dealing with fires and fire investigations and EFI Global got to conduct and teach classes on their investigations.