Don't worry if you see a burning helicopter near Herring Cove, DND says

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Flames can grow quite big on the helicopter trainer, but officials say it's safe.  (Naval Personnel and Training Group - image credit)
Flames can grow quite big on the helicopter trainer, but officials say it's safe. (Naval Personnel and Training Group - image credit)

People in Herring Cove, N.S., may see a burning helicopter Thursday night, but the Department of National Defence says it's part of a training exercise.

From 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., the Naval Fleet School off John Brackett Drive will train members of the Atlantic damage control division on a helicopter trainer. That's the frame of a helicopter stuck to a concrete pad on the ground and it's used to simulate a helicopter emergency on a ship.

"Instruction staff use propane burners to ignite a fire in different locations throughout the frame," said Margaret MacDonald Conway, spokesperson for CFB Halifax.

"While these flames can be fairly large, the public can rest assured that they are fully under control, and that safety teams will be on site monitoring all activities."

The military runs the sessions twice a year and the flames may be seen from land or from the water. The new mock helicopter replaced one that had been burned and extinguished for 20 years.

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