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BOISE -- Drivers along Capitol Boulevard may notice some commotion at Boise State this week -- but there's no reason for alarm.

The Boise Fire Department, along with fire crews from Meridian and Star are doing some annual high-rise training the university's Barnes Towers.

The exercise, which includes simulated smoke and victims, helps firefighters become familiar with conditions they would face fighting a real fire in a high-rise building.

The dorms are currently unoccupied for the summer, so it makes for an ideal location to host the simulation.

To get into real buildings, with real working elevators, and stairways, and standpipes...It gives a bit more reality to our drills, said Dep. Chief Romeo Gervais.

Firefighters say training alongside crews from neighboring cities, helps prepare them to work together in real-world situations.

I think that's probably one of the biggest advantages to this, said Gervais Over the course of six days, we have nearly 400 firefighters training here...so that inter-agency cooperation is key.

In addition to firefighters, some university staff are also participating in the week-long training, which is now in its third year at Boise State.

We've learned every year, and we've made the drill a little bit more real and we've added some additional pieces in and said 'hey, what do we need to work on', and tweak those to keep seeing continued improvement, said Gervais. And we certainly have seen the crews gain experience and skill.

The training runs through Friday, May 23 and again on Monday, May 25.

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