PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) - Hundreds of firefighters from throughout the region are in Pikeville this weekend for training.
They are scenes firefighters hope they never have to see.
Randy Courtney says, "I tell them before every class I hope I'm teaching you something that you never have to use, but we know that's not reality. We are in this business to save lives and save property."
That is why more than 350 firefighters are attending the 24th Annual Pike County/Pikeville Fire and Rescue School...where they spend time in the classroom and going through training courses.
All of the firefighters go through a variety of drills like repelling out a window, extinguishing a propane tank, and car extractions.
Courtney says, "Oh you've got to train! The old saying is, if you don't use it you lose it."
Another aspect of the school is survival and rescue for the firefighters themselves.
State fire rescue instructor, Nate Looney says, "We've had a few incidents within the last few years where firefighters have been killed, so we are now training on ways to get ourselves out or get someone else out if they've become incapacitated and need help getting out."
So they can protect themselves while doing what they all say they signed up for.
"They are trying to help their community, trying to help other people. The thing about our job is the more we train, the more we become profecient at it," says Looney.
Brushing up on old skills and learning some new ones, all so they can better serve their communities.
The school runs through Sunday.