Pardubice firefighters used virtual reality to practice firefighting, February 23, 2023, Pardubice.
Pardubice – In the future, virtual reality could be common equipment at fire stations, firefighters can use it during training for real interventions. Recently, Pardubice firefighters tried out modern technologies. Professional firefighter Petr Dvořák told ČTK today that he is also a teacher at the Secondary Industrial School of Chemistry in Pardubice, where fire protection is taught.
“It's a very realistic feeling. We have classic emergency clothing, under the clothing there is a vest that heats up when you walk closer to the fire, when you let go of the hose, it pulls back. There are not so many fires anymore, because fire prevention is at a high level in the Czech Republic. For for younger firefighters, virtual reality is the only option where they can practice interventions practically all the time,” said Dvořák.
The Pardubice firefighters collaborated with the professional firefighter from Iceland, Omar Agustsson, with representatives of the University of Žilina, the Pardubice High School of Chemical Engineering and the company Flaim, which makes virtual reality, to test the virtual reality. “The Flaim system is used for training by many corps in the world, NASA also has it, it simulates real conditions. A room four by four meters is enough. Sensors are installed that register what position you are in. We tried simulating an aircraft engine fire. The company will do any scenario, she recently hit an aircraft carrier,” said Dvořák.
In addition to virtual reality, firefighters tested AR hololens glasses that project information into space and could be implemented directly in the field in helmets. “Pilots in fighter jets usually have glasses, similar systems are in cars that project the route on the screen. The system can provide remote support to the firefighter, the operations officer can communicate with him, he can see where the firefighter is looking,” said Dvořák.
Testing the glasses is an international project in which the regional firefighters, the industrial school in Pardubice, the Lithuanian training center for firefighters, the Estonian Academy of Safety Sciences and a Cypriot programming company participate. Hololens glasses are more expensive, according to Dvořák, they could be part of firefighting equipment within ten years, according to him, virtual reality is not that expensive, so firefighters could get it earlier for training.