Hill AFB marks historic fire drill anniversary

  • Published
  • By Donovan Potter 75th Air Base Wing Public Affairs

HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah – Eighty-three years ago today, before America entered World War II, Hill Air Force Base—then known as Hill Field—conducted its inaugural fire drill.

In a nod to history, Hill AFB Fire and Emergency Services held a training exercise May 22 at the 75th Air Base Wing headquarters building.

Leaders from the 75th Civil Engineer Group came across a newspaper article that chronicled Hill’s first fire drill, dated May 22, 1941.

Fire training exercises provide firefighters a chance to practice live firefighting techniques in a controlled environment, improving their skills and efficiency for real-life fire scenarios.

Since Hill AFB F&ES already performs training drills a least three days a week each month, they decided to commemorate the anniversary with a special exercise.

During this training, responders tackled a vehicle fire scenario—a parked car ablaze alongside of a building.

Daniel Gallegos, the assistance chief of the 775th Civil Engineer Squadron Training and Emergency Services, said vehicle fires happen more often than people may realize, especially with the popularity of electric vehicles.

In addition to vehicle fire drills, Hill AFB firefighters engage in rigorous live structural and aircraft fire training at least twice a year, meeting the requirements set by the installation fire chief.

Tiana Bykowski, the assistant chief of the 775th Civil Engineer Squadron Fire Prevention, called the exercise a success.

“Hill AFB Fire and Emergency Services strives to provide the highest level of quality services to the community we serve, both on and around Hill, no different than our predecessors did in 1941,” Bykowski said.

Team Hill members can learn more about Hill AFB F&ES on Facebook @Hill AFB Fire & Emergency Services.