The crash landing of Asiana Airlines Flight 214 in San Francisco is something airlines train to never happen. But if it ever does, Honolulu Aircraft Rescue Firefighters are trained to be at the ready.
The crews can respond to an accident at a moments notice and they are mandated to put out 90 percent of a fire within 90 seconds.
It’s a feat aimed to save lives… and fast!
A crash truck helps them do it. The truck — similar to the ones used in San Francisco — is a high-powered Snozzle Truck with a piercing tip that can punch through a plane’s metal exterior and apply water or foam inside the aircraft.
“We are ready at all our airports and hope we remain ready and train at the highest level,” State Airports Fire Chief Martinez Jacobs said.
The Federal Aviation Administration requires emergency training every three years, but the Honolulu International Airport has gone even further, forming an incident command system that includes training with county and federal fire crews, as well as paramedics.
“In an event that that’s big, with hundreds of people on board, you need everyone involved. It’s a community response,” State Airports Medical Director James Ireland said.
Honolulu also has several tools at the ready including two rescue boats, along with six crash trucks and a fire engine.
“Resources, equipment, personnel power, and strength to respond quickly. With the right kinds of struggle, Honolulu is ready,” firefighter trainer Stacy Rogers said.
Honolulu also has trailers set up around the airport, stocked with medical supplies in the case of an emergency.