BRADFORD — Ontario is launching the first of two new Mobile Live Fire Training Units to help support fire services’ firefighter training needs. The new mobile training units, part of the province’s plan to expand and modernize access to firefighting training, will bring additional high-quality, hands-on training directly to fire services in all regions of the province.
“As we work to build safer communities across Ontario, ensuring that firefighters continue to have access to the latest world-class training is critically important,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones. “With the introduction of these new mobile live fire training units, fire services will be able to have access to high quality, live fire training in their own communities. These units are a critical part of our government’s plan to expand fire training by making the investments needed to help ensure public safety.”
The units, which are 16m long, are designed to operate across the province, including at Regional Training Centres and local fire departments. The first unit, launched today in Bradford, is available immediately to fire services in southern and central Ontario. The second unit, expected to be completed by December 2021, will be available to fire services in northern Ontario in early 2022.
As part of the training offered via the mobile training units, firefighters will experience real flames, extreme heat, high humidity, severely restricted visibility, and thick smoke during their real-world training. The fire simulation firefighter training meets the job performance requirements outlined in National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) training standards.
“The new Mobile Live Fire Training Units simulate real situations involving fire – which forms an important part of firefighter training and complements in-class learning. The introduction of the mobile live fire training unit is designed to ensure firefighter training is accessible, affordable, attainable and scalable to all fire services across the province,” said Jon Pegg, Ontario Fire Marshal.
These new mobile units provide additional training opportunities for departments, which are already supported through courses available online, at local fire departments, through 28 Regional Training Centre and other partnerships. The Ontario government also previously supported fire services across the province with a $5 million grant to support their training needs in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are very pleased to see the unveiling of Ontario’s new Mobile Live Fire Training Units,” said Kevin McNeilly, President of the Firefighters Association of Ontario. “Firefighters in Ontario now have the ability to get this invaluable live fire training close at hand or from Regional Training Centres. The FFAO would like to thank the Solicitor General and Ontario Fire Marshal’s Office for putting firefighters safety first once again.“
"The health and safety of our firefighters and the public is the Ontario Association of Fire Chiefs’ main concern and priority.” said OAFC President, Chief Mark MacDonald. “One of the best ways to accomplish this is through widely available modern training practices, equipment, and facilities. These two mobile live fire training units represent a good first step towards modernizing firefighter training and bringing training closer to home."
“The launch of these mobile training units is a positive step forward towards enhancing access to firefighter training in Ontario,” said Carmen Santoro, President of the Ontario Professional Firefighters’ Association. “These units will assist in achieving standardized training across the province.”
- There are 441 fire departments in Ontario including 32 large municipal services consisting of full-time fire personnel, 215 composite fire departments made up of full-time and volunteer personnel, and 194 small municipal fire services or communities without municipal organization and are made up solely of volunteers.
- Municipal fire departments work closely with the Office of the Fire Marshal to deliver educational and training programs for firefighters.
- The Mobile Live Fire Training Units were manufactured in Ontario by Dräger Safety Canada. Dräger is an international leader in medical and safety technology with over 130 years of experience.
- The National Fire Protection Association is an internationally recognized organization that develops fire service training standards used in Ontario.