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"Running" is the slightly misleading name of the competition event unique to firefighters. Whilst running is certainly part of it, the competition is focused around skillful and quick handling of firefighting equipment and tasks. Running comes in two flavours - urban and rural - that are tailored to the tasks typical of each.  Truganina competes in both urban and rural running, with our own standalone team for the Rural competition and as a part of the Hoppers Crossing Fire Brigade team for Urban.

 

Urban running has a number of events that link to the original horse and human powered carts that were used to fight fires in the days before fire trucks. More modern events are now included in the program that are based on typical urban firefighting using pumper style vehicles.   There are a large number of events that can typically run over several days, and involve differing team sizes.  The events are based on the sorts of manouevres and actions that firefighters would use  - setting hydrants, climbing ladders and running hoses.

 

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The combined Hoppers Crossing/Truganina team running the Pumper 4's event at State Championships 2016 in Mildura

 

Rural running competitions focus on a smaller number of events - normally six - and are run over a single day.  Most events use a team of 4, except for the "5 man team" - which (unsurprisingly) has a team of five men and/or women. The events are more typical of the "country" fire fightng that takes place in a rural context off the back of tanker style vehicles and focuses on drawing water from dams and rivers rather than reticulated town supplies. Rural also has a strong emphasis on not wasting water that would typically be a scarce resource in the country. Spilling water or having uncontrolled or "open" hoses will quickly be penalised. 

 

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Some shots of the Truganina Rural Running Team in action 

 

Both competitions focus on skills in handing coupligs and hoses cleanly and quickly. There is a heavy emphasis on speed that you wont find on an actual incident fireground where safety is paramount, and a firefighter seen running will be told to slow down and exercise more care. By contrast, in a running competition things happen with extraordinary pace, and complex evolutions of hose work can happen in remarkably short times. 

 

The state championships for each style of competition draw very sizeable contingents of competitors from across the state and are also often involve an expo of current firefighting equipment and technology.