ROME — The Rome Fire Department underwent some specialized training this week when state fire instructors brought their survival training trailer to the city for the first time, according to officials at the city fire department.

Courtesy of the state Office of Fire Prevention and Control, the trailer is designed to train firefighters in mask confidence, moving through darkness and solo rescue, the local fire officials said.

Firefighters have to crawl through a pitch black set of corridors while wearing their breathing masks and other equipment, and then have to bail out of a window once they reach the top of the trailer.

“It’s a maze. Like a really, really cruel funhouse,” said Fire Captain Michael T. Davis.

“It’s designed to make you uncomfortable.”

The trailer was set up at the Central Fire Station on Black River Boulevard for four days this week, so each shift would have a turn at the training. Davis said the trailer simulates crawling through a burning building, including sometimes having to climb through walls and into residential wiring.

“It’s completely pitch black on the inside,” he said.

The firefighter’s gear includes a rope and hook for when they reach the top and need to climb out and descend a window, to simulate bailing out of a multi-story residence.

Fire Chief Thomas Iacovissi said the fire department has its own apparatus in-house for this type of training, but it also helps when the firefighters can learn from new and different instructors. He said this is the first time the state has brought this training trailer to Rome.

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