PRO TIP: If you dump jet fuel on a burning plane instead of water, you're gonna have a bad time.
That's exactly what happened in late October to some Washington State Patrol firefighters during what was, thankfully, a training exercise. According to recently-obtained video from TV station KING5, the firefighters at the department's North Bend academy mistakenly pumped jet fuel instead of water onto a flaming mock-up of an airplane crash.
Right away, they knew something was up for obvious reasons, the TV station reports.
"When the firefighters put water on a fire that had been deliberately developed for training the fire got bigger instead of smaller," said Bob Calkins of the State Patrol, which is investigating the incident.
That is indeed the opposite of what you want to happen.
Calkins said investigators believe that the academy's oil/water separator – which recycles the water used for fire training exercises – did not correctly filter the jet fuel used for the exercise from the reclaimed water. So crews filled their tanks with water tainted with jet fuel -– a combustible combination.
Two firefighters suffered minor burns as a result of the mix-up, but otherwise no one was seriously injured. Even if it's just a training exercise, it could have ended a lot worse than it did here.