Active & Collaborative: Patrick Setters – How mock up explosions and chemical burns have helped Public Services & Theatrical and Media Make Up students prepare for the world of work - Paston

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Active & Collaborative: Patrick Setters – How mock up explosions and chemical burns have helped Public Services & Theatrical and Media Make Up students prepare for the world of work

A group of 28 Public Services and Media Make Up students were invited to stage a disaster day fire exercise alongside Norfolk Fire & Rescue Service at local packaging company UCP & Zeller Plastik. The exercise saw students playing the role of casualties who were made up to look as though they had received chemical burns as a result of an explosion.

This is an excellent example of Active and Collaborative learning that meets the requirements of the college's Teaching and Learning Strategy

Patrick Setters writes:

“UCP Zeller were running a week-long safety campaign at their factory and wanted to run a fire / contamination drill. Through our links with the Fire and Rescue Service, we were asked to stage a scenario where casualties were contaminated by a diesel and chemical spill following an explosion in one area of the factory. Due to the nature of the scenario, we asked the Theatrical and Media Make Up course if they wanted to be involved and they kindly agreed.

The build up to the exercise included a site safety briefing where UCP Zeller supplied students with proper protective footwear. The day started at 8:30am when 14 of the Public Services students visited 14 of the Theatrical and Media Make Up students in their studio who created the looks for the day. Once make up was complete, all 28 students were transported to the factory for a safety brief from the fire service at 10am.

The exercise itself started at 11am with the alarms being set off. UCP Zeller wanted to test their evacuation procedures, as well as the response of their first aiders. The Public Service students role-played casualties, made more realistic by the excellent skills of the makeup artists. Five fire appliances responded to the incident and they set up a de-contamination area, consisting of four fire hoses hung from two ladders placed between two fire appliances. This made a de-contamination shower that the students had to walk through, getting cold and very wet! After this they were given dry rescue suits and lead off by UCP Zeller first aiders. The exercise ended about 1pm and everyone involved was rewarded with hot drinks and bacon/sausage baps to help warm up (vegetarian options were also supplied!).

The Theatrical and Media Make Up students are now able to use this project as part of their portfolios. These students have also been able to gain experience of a different aspect of their industry as there are companies that offer these facilities for major incident training.

The Public Service students gained valuable employer engagement and were able to observe first-hand the practical application of different leadership styles that they have studied in their theory lessons.

The day’s exercise also helped further links between our course and Norfolk Fire & Rescue Service who kindly allow us to visit their stations and work with the different watches.

This activity has received some good feedback from all students involved with each group gaining something valuable from the experience. The makeup artists learned that sometimes the timescales can be short and having a make up repair kit could be beneficial. The Public Services students saw how effective and efficient team work can be and gained an insight of the different aspects of the Fire and Rescue Service, such as de-contamination and environmental protection, which matched up to some of the units on their course.”

This exercise was one of a number of employer engagement activities that Patrick’s Public Services students have been involved in which also included a high rise evacuation drill.

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