TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) — There is a skills test firefighters with the Tupelo Fire Department must take two times a year.
It's called the Firefighter Combat Challenge, and firefighters with engine companies 1, 2 and 6 competed in a modified version of it on Friday.
The firefighters have to run up and down a tower, pull a fire hose, pull a 165 pound dummy and do a simulated forcible entry.
"Just because the firefighter gets older in age, fire still burns the same," said Romeco Traylor, a training officer. "This is our way of promoting and encouraging physical fitness for all of the firefighters."
Firefighters say this test best simulates what they encounter while out on a call.
"That's another reason why we train the way we train because when we push our bodies to limits like that, it's a possibility of having a heart attack," added Andrew Hooper, the captain of A shift at Fire Station 1. "We try and do as much cardio and exercises as we can. That's what the Firefighter Combat Challenge is about."
Even though the firefighters work for the same department, it's very competitive with bragging rights on the line to see who wins and who needs to train harder.
"Guys may be smiling for a little while, but it's best to know the guys that lost this time will be coming at them next time," said Hooper.
"I don't care what you're doing as a firefighter. It can be for grading purposes, for evaluation purposes, but the guys are going to make it competitive in some kind of way," added Traylor. "Everybody wants to win."