Cleveland firefighters use "cut teams" for RNC

Posted at 5:28 PM, May 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-26 10:01:40-04

Cleveland firefighters are getting protest training like they've never done before—cutting concrete, cutting metal pipes and the list goes on as they get ready for potentially unique protests during the RNC.

Protesting police involved shootings, demonstrators in Cleveland have blocked roads in the past.

But, protestors in other states have taken civil disobedience to another level.

In California and Arizona protestors chained, handcuffed or tied themselves to cars, each other, or concrete blocks to block traffic. Some even cover the chains with PVC pipe so authorities don't know where to cut the metal chains.

Firefighters who spoke with's Paul Kiska said the Cleveland Fire Department is putting together cut teams. Those cut teams are learning how to safely cut chains and pipes without causing injury. That training took place Wednesday at the Fire Department's Training Academy on Lakeside Avenue.

They're also training for an unusual type of protest. Human tripods. That's where someone builds a tripod and hoists themselves up to block traffic. Anxious city leaders were uneasy with us showing up at Wednesday’s training, so we're not showing all of the training in the video attached to this story.

But, we're also not showing anything protestors don't already know. Sources told’s Paul Kiska they expect groups to have their attorneys with them videotaping police and firefighters cutting protestors free in case someone gets hurt.

One thing is clear, local authorities could see types of protesting during the RNC never seen around here before. Other fire departments like Parma took part in Wednesday’s training.