McKeesport firefighter to compete in national event
McKeesport firefighter Chris Cerci will compete against colleagues from across the nation at a special event at the Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas.
The Scott Firefighter Combat Challenge Lion Invitational is scheduled for Jan. 3.
Cerci qualified by placing third in the over-45 age division at the Scott World Challenge XXII in Las Vegas in October. He also competed in the open division and in the over-40 division.
Sixty-five qualified to participate in the World event; 23 advanced to the championship finals.
Cerci completed the course in less than 2 minutes.
The three categories of competition are individual; tandem, in which two competitors split the course; and relay, in which a team of three to five splits the course.
Cerci, 46, competes as an individual.
“I think I will fare pretty well at this Cotton Bowl event,” Cerci said. “The fact that the invitees all qualified by doing well at (the Scott World Challenge) means the competition will be extremely tough. I hope to finish in the top five in my division.”
Challenges include a high-rise pack carry, hose hoist, negotiating a 140-foot slalom course, dragging a charged hose line for 75 feet, and dragging a 175-pound Rescue Randy mannequin backward for 106 feet.
All competitors must use their own protective equipment, such as turnout gear, a helmet, coat, pants, gloves and boots. Equipment must be serviceable and approved for structural firefighting.
A Scott high pressure breathing apparatus is provided and must be worn by everyone in the individual/team categories.
Cerci's first competition was in 2001 in Baltimore.
“It completely opened my eyes in a very drastic way at just how difficult this competition was,” Cerci said. “I then understood how it earned its nickname — the toughest two minutes in sports.
“Over the years, learning to train properly for this specific event has played a large role in doing well,” he continued. “I also do not take time off in the off season. I train year round due to the fact I do not want to digress in my physical capability, both for the competitions and my job.”
Cerci also is a firefighter in Peters Township and Swissvale.
He recently was named one of the 100 fittest firefighters in the nation, and has been invited to compete at the Firefighter Throwdown in San Diego in February.
“I continue to compete because I have the competitive drive and I enjoy the camaraderie,” Cerci said. “I have made friends all over the world over the years. Just as importantly, I compete because doing so keeps me in top condition. Doing this job at times can be extremely, physically tasking, and worst-case scenario is that my physical capability may determine if I or someone else survives. I take that very seriously.”
Information about the firefighter challenge is available online at www.firefighterchallenge.com.
Michael DiVittorio is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-664-9161 ext. 1965, or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- 2 firefighters injured battling Munhall blaze
- Former Century III Mall general manager waives charges
- West Mifflin thrift store sells winning lottery ticket
- Twin Rivers Intermediate students get hands-on science lessons
- St. Agnes students assist food bank during Catholic Schools Week
- Overall Mon-Yough homicide stats remain steady
- Propel teams up with local organizations to test performing arts methods
- Steel Valley school directors honor new San Francisco 49ers head coach Tomsula
- Munhall council president charged in crash that injured woman
- Nonprofit helps police keep wanderers safe in Mon-Yough area
- Elizabeth keeps millage rate flat, but council considers 2016 fire tax