Glen Carbon – The Fire Protection District here may be able to provide a burning building for itself and nearby fire agencies to use for training purposes if the Village Board of Trustees fully agrees.

“It will look like a typical two-story residence,” said Jason Whitaker, chief of the Glenn Carbon Fire Department.

He showed members of the Building and Development Committee the full paper renderings of the building on Tuesday before the committee voted and gave its tentative approval of the plan.
“It’s going to have a roof that’s half flat and half sloped, which will give us the ability to do roof training,” Whittaker said.
The two-story building is located on the west side of the new fire station building at 199 S. Main St., near the tree line. The Site will be created by Fire Appliances, Inc. Just outside Sun Prairie, Wisconsin.
If the project is fully approved, it will take six to eight months to complete, so Whitaker estimates it will open in the spring or early summer of 2024.
The concrete workers will add the pads first, followed by the ironworkers to construct the iron and steel building, which will be sheathed with metal siding.
It will measure 2,024 square feet and cost $405,336.

Special build

Within the proposed facility, Whittaker said, there would be three cremation rooms: two on the main floor and one on the second floor.
Firefighters can’t burn things all over the entire building. They will burn the typical materials inside – straw and wooden pallets. A high-tech ventilation system will be installed with exhaust fans to extract smoke and other fumes.
The building will rest on concrete platforms and a portion of compacted asphalt that will support the weight of the firefighting vehicles for the training simulator. It will not have any plumbing but will have minimal electrical service to operate the ventilation fans.
There will be no indoor lighting due to the heat levels reached inside during training. Whitaker said the temperature monitoring system will ensure temperatures stay below 900 degrees.
“These things can get very heated and people can get very silly when they try to train, so we have to keep people in check, especially when you have outside agencies using your stuff,” Whitaker said.
Whitaker described the cremation chambers as “a room within a room”.
They are built with special panels that are checked annually and must be replaced every 10 years. These panels are insulated from the roof and exterior walls, providing insulation to protect the outside of the building. The exterior paint comes with a 20-year guarantee against fading.

The main site

The site is large and will be fenced off from the rest of the property with two gated entrances and includes at least one fire hydrant.
Evergreen trees will be planted on the outside of the fence as noise barriers.
The second phase of the project will be the installation of a water retention system to allow the village to recover all used water and recycle it for future training.
One of the closest current training facilities for firefighters is in Petalto, Whittaker said. Creating one at Glen Carbon would eliminate the need to ferry fire district members to Bethalto once a week for training.
Another such facility is in Madison, Whittaker said, and Swansea has a tower that Glen Carbon firefighters sometimes use for aerial training.
Putting this facility together should help Edwardsville, Troy, Maryville, Boonton Beach and other nearby fire agencies train, along with Lewis and Clark College and the Illinois Fire Institute, according to Whitaker.

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