Storm Rider (FireFighting Documentary) – Real Stories

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Synopsis:

Firefighting is a tough and life threatening job. To be a firefighter, a person must undergo a technical training of high degree in general firefighting techniques and special rescue operations. Firefighting operations are also associated with hazards, in which smoke, high temperatures, poisonous atmospheres, and oxygen deficiency are the major ones, while structural collapse and falls are additional.

British adventurer, filmmaker and author, Chris Terrill joined a group of inmate firefighters tackling the vicious forest fires of southern California. Every person of the group was convicted prisoner who were going to serve as a front line firefighters. The group included gangsters, drug dealers, burglars, and armed robbers, and was named as crew-7. For them, firefighting was an alternative to being locked up in prison.

Crew-7 members were nicknamed the good-bad guys. It was one of a number of crews fight alongside regular firefighters. The firefighting agency Cal Fire and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation was running that remarkable scheme. The Oak Glen camp was home to the good-bad guys. It was one of 39 such camps statewide that house 4,300 inmates. They all were trained to respond to all sorts of emergencies like floods, and rescue but mostly wildfire. These men imprisoned as they are have learned the importance of working together and looking out for each other.

A wildfire in Southern California in the early autumn of 2008 provided a chance for Chris Terrill to work together with crew-7 firefighters. That was a worst wind driven wildfire recorded.  It has burned thousands of acres, hundreds of residencies, and evacuated up to 40,000 people. 14 firefighters were also injured, but fortunately no one killed. In the film, we can see how crew-7 confronted fast spreading raging wildfire. We can observe their remarkable spirit of protecting houses and removing vegetation from being fuel of fire.

 

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