There is a fire in the underground, the staircase is smoky, and it is not clear how many people are still in the building - in such situations it is important to act quickly and efficiently to avoid greater damage. "That's why we also work closely with the Riesa fire brigade, which held another exercise at our premises on Saturday, 12 September 2020," says Denis Malluschke, fire protection officer at ESF Elbe-Stahlwerke Feralpi GmbH. Not only the comrades are active, but also FERALPI STAHL itself. "We test how well our reporting chain works, the security guard has to know exactly what's going on, and we are responsible for providing the fire brigade with the necessary local knowledge. In addition, six employees were in action as extras."

A total of five emergency vehicles from the main fire station, Riesa-Mitte and Riesa Gröba fire brigades were deployed to extinguish the fictitious burning cellar in the technical administration building at the steel producer and to evacuate trapped people. "Before we can start rescuing people and fighting the fire, it is immensely important to be able to read and apply the fire brigade plans as quickly as possible," says fire brigade chief Robert Gudat. "We train all this regularly in different companies so that we are optimally prepared everywhere in case of an emergency."

To make everything look as real as possible, fog machines provided enough smoke. The training dummies donated by FERALPI STAHL to the Riesa fire brigade in August were also used - they stood in for incapacitated persons who had to be rescued.

Both organisers agree that the fire drill repeatedly improved knowledge about internal processes and clarified the associated reporting chains. A positive aspect is the quick and safe reaction of the security guard on duty, Stefan Panitz, who ensured the necessary fire brigade plans including local briefing of the rescue forces.

The fire in the underground caused smoke to spread uncontrollably into the stairwell, cutting off the escape route for the Feralpi colleagues. One of the most difficult situations for the fire brigade. In fires inside buildings, fire smoke poses the greatest danger to people due to its harmful ingredients and the obstruction of visibility it causes, making the work of the comrades much more difficult.

Several groups under breathing protection fought the fire in the basement and carried out the search for persons. Early smoke extraction can help to increase the probability of survival of missing persons, facilitate the search for persons and firefighting for advancing squads, and secure escape routes. The fire was quickly fought. A total of 14 emergency personnel were deployed to evacuate eight people from the changing areas using extension ladders, a turntable ladder vehicle and emergency stretchers. The support of staff familiar with the area is always of central importance here. "Keep calm first" was the conclusion of Mr. Andre Jahn, shift electrician at the rolling mill, "it's just a matter of getting the rescue workers on site as quickly as possible and briefing them."

Pprevention is important! FERALPI STAHL thanks the Riesa fire brigades for their many years of cooperation and hopes for continued good and successful collaboration.