Developing a Training Program

Topic: Developing a Training Program

Time Required: Two Hours


   · Appropriate Audio Visual Support


   · Fire Instructor's Training Guide, Second Edition, Joseph R. Bachtler, Fire Engineering

   · Fire and Emergency Services Instructor, Sixth Edition, IFSTA



Objective (SPO):1-1

The individual will demonstrate a basic understanding of what is required to develop and deliver an in-station training programs in a fire or rescue department, from memory, without assistance, to a written test accuracy of 70%.


Developing a Training Program

   · Training Audience

   · Training Needs

   · Training Program

Developing a Training Program

SPO 1-1 The individual will demonstrate a basic understanding of what is required to develop and deliver an in-station training programs in a fire or rescue department, from memory, without assistance, to a written test accuracy of 70%.

EO 1-1 Identify various training audiences within the department.

EO 1-2 Identify various training needs within the department.

EO 1-3 Develop and implement an in-service training program that meet the needs of the department and the community.

Many fire and rescue departments, especially volunteer ones, experience difficulty in developing and delivering training activities as well as developing a long-range training program. Those departments that have training programs may also need to re-evaluate their programs from time to time to make sure that they are achieving their intended results. While this drill is intended for individuals with training responsibility, it can be conducted as an interactive session with everyone. This may provide an opportunity for new ideas and approaches. It may also assist in getting a better handle on the training needs of the department.

I. Training Audience (1-1)

A. Who Needs to Train?

  1. New members in basic skills

  2. Experienced members - refresher training for skills maintenance

  3. Drivers

      a. Initial

      b. Periodic re-evaluation

  4. Officers

      a. Management and supervision

      b. Technical

      c. Tactical

  5. Specialist/technician

      a. Skills maintenance

      b. Periodic information updates

  6. Everyone

     a. Operational

     b. Administrative

B. Composition of a Volunteer or Combination Department

  1. Individuals in high school or college

  2. Individuals working one or more jobs

  3. Individuals with families (including caring for elderly or disabled family members)

  4. Single parents

  5. Individuals involved in other community activities

  6. Individuals with other emergency services responsibilities

  7. Individuals with various knowledge and skill levels

  8. Individuals with various education levels

II. Training Needs (1-2)

A. Regular and Special Needs

  1. Maintenance of basic skills

      a. Fire

      b. Rescue

      c. Emergency care

      d. Hazmat

  2. Recertification requirements

      a. Bloodborne pathogens

      b. Hazmat

      c. CPR

      d. Emergency care

  3. New service requirements

      a. Confined space

      b. Trench rescue

      c. Hazmat beyond previous service level

  4. Based on scene analysis of past incidents or operational problems

  5. Periodic evaluation of knowledge/skills

      a. Fire example - don and put into use a positive pressure self-contained breathing apparatus within

          1 minute while attired in full personal protective clothing (coat, pants, helmet, boots, hood, and


      b. Emergency care example - demonstrate one person CPR on an adult maintaining the required

          number of breathes and compressions for a period of 3 minutes

      c. Hazmat example - demonstrate knowledge in the use of the Emergency Response Guidebook

          by looking up product 1017 and find the evacuation distance for a spill

      d. Rescue example - demonstrate stabilizing a vehicle sitting on a flat surface

  6. Cross-training or specialization

B. Imposed Requirements

  1. Department constitution and by-laws

  2. Employment or position requirements

  3. Legal requirements

      a. 29 CFR 1910.120q - OSHA hazmat regulation

      b. 29 CFR 1910.1200 - OSHA bloodborne pathogens regulation

      c. 29 CFR 1910.134 - OSHA respiratory regulation

  4. NFPA Standards

      a. NFPA 472 - Professional Competence of Responders to Hazardous Materials Incidents

      b. NFPA 1001 -Fire Fighter Professional Qualifications

      c. NFPA 1002 - Fire Apparatus Driver/Operator Professional Qualifications

      d. NFPA 1006 - Rescue Technician Professional Qualifications

      e. NFPA 1041 - Fire Service Instructor Professional Qualifications

      f. NFPA 1500 - Fire Department Occupational Safety and Health Program

      g. NFPA 1521 - Fire Department Safety Officer

  5. State or local requirements

III. Training Program (1-3)

A. Scheduling and Frequency

  1. Schedule in relation to work and other obligations

  2. Schedule in relation to availability of personnel

  3. Schedule frequency in relation to response levels

  4. Schedule frequency in relation to need

  5. Mix topics in relation to services provided

  6. Schedule in relation to other departmental activities such as fund raising

  7. Separate various audiences

       a. Young and middle-ages

       b. Rookies and experienced

       c. Members and officers

  8. Repeat training activities to increase attendance

B. Meaningful and Relevant

  1. Analyze audience needs

  2. Have some practical application

  3. Provide current information

  4. Relate to individual interests and needs

  5. Relate to department needs

C. Planned and Organized

  1. Develop a training schedule with short- and long-term goals

  2. Utilize qualified presenters

      a. Instructional ability

      b. Technical knowledge

  3. Have lesson guides for delivery and documentation

  4. Arrange logistical support (prior planning and coordination)

  5. Arrange material in a logical flow

  6. Integrate training based on service provided

      a. Firefighting skills - suggested topics

         i. Personal protective clothing and safety

         ii. Hose and hose appliances

         iii. Engine company ground ladders

         iv. Self-contained breathing apparatus

         v. Ventilation theory and practice

         vi. Basic hose and ladder evolutions

     b. Emergency Care - suggested topics

          i. Infection control and safety

          ii. Primary patient surveys

          iii. CPR

          iv. Fracture management

          v. Soft tissue injuries

          vi. Situational analysis

      c. Rescue skills - suggested topics

          i. Vehicle stabilization

          ii. Vehicle construction

          iii. Stabilization and hand tool practice

          iv. Hand tool practice

          v. Electric and pneumatic tool practice

          vi. Hydraulic tool practice

      d. Hazardous materials operations – suggested topics

          i. Recognition and identification

          ii. Use of the Emergency Response Guide

          iii. Hazard and risk assessment

          iv. Basic control and containment

          v. Basic decontamination

         vi. Emergency medical considerations

  7. Consider obstacles to training

      a. Attitude of leadership

      b. Unreasonable requirements

      c. Availability of training - time and/or location

      d. Personal fears

          i. Heights

          ii. Heat

          iii. SCBA

          iv. "Blood and guts"

     e. Peer pressure

     f. Lack of support/motivation by department

  8. Consider recognition for participation

D. Have Measurable Results

  1. Stated objectives

      a. Knowledge

      b. Skills performance

  2. Identifiable means of evaluation to determine if desired outcomes were met

  3. Provide feedback to participants

  4. Measurements must be

      a. Reasonable

      b. Realistic

      c. Substantiated

E. Record Keeping

  1. Membership maintenance

  2. Liability protection

  3. Insurance ratings

F. Formal Versus In-Service Training

  1. Need to supplement formal training

  2. Reliance on formal training solely can lead to operational disconnects

  3. In-service training should be consistent with formal training

  4. Incorporate safety considerations – not negotiable

G. Implementing a Training Program

  1. Minimum of monthly in-service training to supplement formal training

  2. Segregate audiences based on need - even if it means more than one session per month

  3. Don't become disappointed by poor results initially



Developing A Training Program

   · Training Audience

   · Training Needs

   · Training Program


A well-organized training program will attract participants and will reduce the need to mandate attendance.