Michigan Tech News

Tech Hosts "Hometown Heroes" Training for Emergency Responders


By Jennifer Donovan


Last Modified 9:21 AM, August 6, 2009

Firefighter training

August 5, 2009—

That wasn’t an accidental propane fire in the Forestry Building parking lot at Michigan Technological University; it was a training exercise to help firefighters learn how to handle propane fires safely.  Michigan Tech is hosting the “Hometown Heroes” training this week for emergency responders from Baraga, Houghton, Keweenaw and Ontonagon Counties. 

More than 100 firefighters, paramedics, hospital and emergency management personnel from the western UP counties gathered at Tech for training in hazardous materials and fire dynamics.  It is the first of planned annual training for emergency responders.

“We want to develop a strong collaborative relationship with the agencies and people who protect our campus,” explained Jon Stone, emergency response specialist at Tech. Emergency responders from metropolitan areas receive regular training, but there are fewer training opportunities for volunteer responders and others in rural areas like this, he explained.

A featured trainer is C.B. “Buzz” Melton, a former battalion chief of the Baltimore Fire Department.  He will talk about handling situations involving hazardous materials and lead hands-on practice of chemical decontaminations.

Michigan Technological University (www.mtu.edu) is a leading public research university developing new technologies and preparing students to create the future for a prosperous and sustainable world. Michigan Tech offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering; forest resources; computing; technology; business; economics; natural, physical and environmental sciences; arts; humanities; and social sciences.