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ClearText from Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute
ClearText 2011, No. 2 July 18, 2011

KU Fire & Rescue Training Institute—Your Source for Free Training

Occasionally we get feedback that someone has said, "I didn't know I could get free training from KU." The short answer is "YES." You can even call us toll free at 866-804-8441, or e-mail or contact any staff member personally to schedule a class or for more information. Our general e-mail address is kufire@ku.edu.

This training is at no cost to the fire department, but it isn't actually free. The Institute pays the costs of training from funds we receive from the Legislature for training Kansas firefighters. The actual cost of delivering a training class ranges from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, depending on the class length, cost of expendables and transporting training props. The good news is that you don't have to worry about if you can afford to train—just worry about if you can afford NOT to train!

Listed below are the general requirements for hosting a class. They're pretty simple and easy to meet.

What training is free?
About 95% of the training we offer is free to members of Kansas fire departments. Non-Kansas fire department members are subject to fees. Check with the Institute about fees for anyone other than Kansas firefighters attending a class.

What training has fees?
We charge non-fire department members who attend or request courses. We also charge a small fee for Annual Fire School Seminars, Conferences, and special or unique courses. National Certification Testing has a small fee. The Fire Service Training Commission wants the funding we receive to be dedicated for training. The Certification Fee covers the direct costs of administering the certification process/exams. We also charge private companies who request that we train their employees. DON'T miss the big point—the majority of what we do for fire departments is FREE.

Number of students
We ask for a minimum of 15 students. If your department can't do that, we encourage you to invite neighboring departments. If you have trouble recruiting enough students, call us—we can help. Our purpose is to train firefighters and we do whatever it takes to make that happen.

Host facilities
An appropriate place is needed for training. If there are classroom materials to cover, we need a classroom. A "day room" in the station, a local school, even the apparatus moved out of the apparatus bays will work. If there are skills involved in the class, we need an appropriate place to perform them. We'll coach you through identification of appropriate facilities, so don't let the absence of dedicated training facilities stop you—we believe in "Anytime, Anywhere, Anyplace." We'll work with you to make it happen.

We will bring any truly unique equipment that's needed, but we ask to use your equipment for the general training. We will do our best to prevent putting you "out of service" during the training session. When we discuss training with you, we will discuss the level of equipment support you can provide.

Time, day, date
We provide the training on a day and at a time that is convenient for you. We routinely provide training weekdays, evenings and weekends. If asked when we can provide the training, you will get a question in return—"when do you want it?" Then we make it happen for you!

Hosting a training prop
There are a few special requirements for hosting one of our mobile training props:

Figure 1

Live Interior Firefighting Unit: This unit supports the live-structural firefighting requirements of Fire Fighter I and II training. Students will fight a "room and contents" fire and/or a stove fire. Contact the Institute to find out what local departments must provide in support of this training. The 15-student minimum applies; however, we can handle up to 50 firefighters in one day of training.

Figure 1

Flammable Liquids & Gases (LP): This unit supports the Handling Propane Emergencies course and the live-fire requirements of Fire Fighter I and II training not supported by the Live Interior Firefighting Unit. Contact the Institute to find out what local departments must provide in support of this training. The 15-student minimum applies; however, we can handle up to 50 firefighters in one day of training, so don't be bashful about inviting your neighbors!

Figure 1

Search & Rescue Trainer: This unit is designed to teach basic structural search and rescue techniques. Built with movable walls and furniture, this trailer allows for multiple configurations and obstacles during search and rescue training. Local departments provide a suitable location and PPE for their firefighters.

Figure 1

Firefighter Skills Trainer: This Skills Trainer includes props for skills that can't be practiced on existing buildings without damage. Props include the "destructive" skills firefighter use to gain entry and ventilate structures. Skills include roof cutting, forcing doors and breaking windows. Fire departments provide a suitable location, PPE for their firefighters, forcible entry tools and ladders for the training evolutions.

Are you unsure about meeting the requirements, but still want to host one of our training props? Contact us and we'll find a way.

The bottom line is, if you want to train, we're ready to assist. All you need to do is make the first contact and we'll take it from there. Before you know it, we'll be in your community helping you become a better fire department.

Have questions? Need a presenter for your next county meeting? Would you like someone to come to your next function to make a presentation to learn what the Institute can do for you? The Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute would be pleased to come and talk to your organization. Call or send an e-mail with details of date, time, location and a local contact person (and phone number). We'll be in touch to confirm our attendance.

Call 866-804-8841 or send an e-mail to KUFIRE@ku.edu. Ask for Glenn Pribbenow or any Program Manager.

Have a topic you want to see addressed? Send your idea to KUFIRE@ku.edu!

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