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      Ottumwa Fire Department prepares for summer training drills

      Fire Training that took place back in April involving the burning of a vacent house.
      The Ottumwa Fire Department is gearing up for a new season.

      Now that summer is just around the corner, firefighters will start doing more training outdoors. Fire Chief Tony Miller says they plan to use another vacant house for training purposes. They burned down a rundown house on Ottumwa??s east-side in April, so newer members could experience what they will be dealing with in real emergencies. OFD also now has a resource from within for investigating arsons.

      "Deputy Cory Benge is back from the police academy, and that went very well," Chief Miller said. "He did well, and is gonna take some cases. He's gotten some arson cases lately in the last few months that we're gonna investigate very thoroughly. We sent a bunch of stuff up to the [Iowa] State Fire Marshal's Office who's assisting with the investigation, and we're gonna see where that rolls."

      Now that Chief Deputy Benge has that training under his belt, OFD will only have to call in the state fire marshal's office to investigate arsons in extreme circumstances.