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July 05, 2024

Life on Broadway

Robert Briseno

SolTrans Expands and the Community Benefits

Vallejo Firefighters at SolTrans Facility on Broadway

SolTrans recently acquired the lot just north of their current Operations and Maintenance Facility at 1850 Broadway St in Vallejo. The goal for obtaining the property is to support future growth and zero-emission bus fleet infrastructure. However, two houses on the new property need to be removed before the space can be fully utilized.

In a community-minded move, SolTrans decided to assist the Vallejo Fire Department by allowing them to use the houses for training purposes. Firefighters from Vallejo and neighboring communities would hone their lifesaving skills in these homes.

Instead of burning the buildings, the firefighters have created realistic, yet safe, training scenarios using Hollywood magic. They’ve installed a smoke generation machine, blacked out the windows, and furnished the homes with typical household items and children’s toys to add authenticity and provide clues about potential victims.

Their approach to training has focused on meticulously recreating the sights, sounds, smells, and obstacles of a real fire. Firefighters are given the opportunity to practice to practice protocols such as cutting into special roof sections to vent smoke and heat, a critical skill in firefighting. Some firefighting team members are even playing the role of 911 dispatchers to ensure practiced communication mimics that of a real emergency.

This immersive training, taking place right on Broadway, provides invaluable experience for the firefighters, making it as real as possible without the actual danger. Our city’s first responders will continue to train at the Broadway site through August and will be joined by additional fire crews from neighboring cities along the way.

While we all hope never to need their services, it’s reassuring to know that our firefighters are so well-prepared. Thanks to SolTrans and its innovative approach, our community is safer, and our firefighters are better equipped to handle real emergencies.

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