Portland Fire Department recently held search and rescue drills using the concrete block building the city purchased on South Russell Street. The building is located adjacent to the city hall property.
Real life conditions were created to give firemen practice drills. During the drills objects were hidden in one of the apartments in the building.
The apartment was filled with smoke and the firemen entered the building to “rescue” the hidden object. There was no attempt to actually burn down the building.
According to Portland Fire Chief Al West, the purpose of the drills was to recreate real life conditions as close as possible without actually burning the building down.
Highland Volunteer Fire Department and Mitchellville Volunteer Fire Departments were invited to participate in the drills.