LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A burning building and Metro Council Members respond to the scene. Some Metro Council members traded in a day at Metro Hall to fight fires at the Jefferson County Regional Fire Training Center in Fern Creek.

The day started with getting dressed in full fire gear. The group was preparing to respond to a building filled with smoke and flames.

"This is what we tell firefighters in case they're in a building so we know a secondary way out," said Chief Dave Goldsmith, with Highview Fire Department.

The man giving the instructions was Chief Goldsmith.

"Don't just look at the fire, look at what's going on around you," Chief Goldsmith told the group. 

Within minutes, the building was engulfed in flames.

It did not take long to get the fire under control, but instead of firefighters, it was actually the members of Metro Council knocking down the flames.

"It is a very hard job, it requires a tremendous amount of bravery, a tremendous amount of education and training, a tremendous amount of focus," said Metro Councilman David James (D-District 6).

"You get a real feel for how hard it is, how much training is involved, how much danger there is," said Metro Councilman Bill Hollander (D-District 9).

"We wanted the council to understand what we do here as a suburban fire," Chief Dave Goldsmith explained. 

Metro Council members were invited after Councilman Dan Johnson made controversial comments while trying to merge city and suburban fire departments.

"Because the city doesn't go and watch houses burn to the ground," said Metro Councilman Dan Johnson (D-District 21) in February.

"It is unfortunate that we got to that point with councilman Johnson," Chief Goldsmith said. "We would have loved for him to be here today so that we could have showed him what we showed everyone else."

After an overwhelming response for firefighters, Johnson eventually apologized and withdrew the ordinance to merge but, by phone on Monday afternoon, he told us there will be another ordinance.

"At least we hope that he can gather more information and be able to understand, that's the reason we wish he was here," Chief Goldsmith said.

Firefighters said they still have an open invitation to Councilman Dan Johnson or any other council members who would like to come to the training.

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