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Thursday, 25 October 2012 17:14

Drew Auto Center Held Free Hands-On Seminar for First Responders

To view a pdf file of this article with photos, click HERE.

Drew Auto Center in La Mesa, CA, held a free extrication demonstration and seminar on Sept. 22.

I-CAR instructor and welding specialist Toby Chess and Steve Carpenter, extrication specialist-instructor, led the hands-on demonstrations after a one-hour seminar on how to efficiently and safely cut through damaged and mangled late model and hybrid vehicles.


Toby has trained more than 2,000 firefighters across the country on the techniques to quickly and safely work with new and late model cars and how to find the weakest spots on the frames of vehicles made with high strength steel.

Steve Carpenter also provided state-of-the-art training equipment from Holmantro Rescue Tools.

Over 35 Firefighters from El Cajon, Alpine, La Mesa, Lemon Grove and Ramona attended the event and were able to work on multiple damaged vehicles that were donated by the insurance company sponsors.

Brian Boggeln, Captain of the Alpine Fire Protection District said, “This type of hands-on training is invaluable for our first responders. We really appreciate getting this opportunity.”

Drew Ford sponsored the free seminar for firefighters, EMTs, police and first responders. The seminar was free of charge thanks to sponsors: State Farm Insurance, DuPont, Auto Club of Southern California, West  Autowrecking, Wawanesa Insurance, FinishMaster, Kent Automotive, Galaxy Towing, and the California Autobody Association. Multiple vehicles were donated for attendees to practice cutting on.

“We put a lot of effort into this event and we’re happy with the turnout. It’s critical that our first responders get this type of hands-on training,” said Larry Houk, Drew Collision-Fix Auto and Glass Manager.

Bill Drew, President, added, “We’re happy to host the event. This is our way of giving back to the community.”


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