DENVER (CBS4) – Fire training in Colorado can help save lives at the bottom of the planet.

There are as many as 200 people from Denver who work in Antarctica, but Elaine Hood with Lockheed Martin says the greatest danger to workers is not wildlife — it’s fire – and when one starts people can’t just call 911.

“People will see how rapidly fire spreads, and that is what is critical because fire moves more rapidly than most people realize,” Hood said.

A model living room set on fire (credit: CBS)

A model living room set on fire (credit: CBS)

On Thursday at Lockheed Martin’s Centennial facility, two miniature living rooms were set on fire to demonstrate the power of fire and the importance of sprinklers.

“Once it flashes over it become fully involved,” a demonstrator said.

Contrast it to the power of fire in an ordinary room that is not protected by a sprinkler system, which is why Hood says all Antarctic support contract employees attend a burn demonstration to help raise their awareness and knowledge about the importance of preventing fires before they even travel to Antarctica.

“Everybody needs to be aware of how powerful fire is, because when we’re working in the three research stations that we help support in Antarctica, we need to understand how powerful fire is,” Hood said.

Lockheed Martin hires 1,000 people a year to work in that part of the world and there is a full-time fire department that operates year round, however they are always looking for firefighters.


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