Firefighters and EMS providers must complete extensive training involving all aspects of their profession with emphasis on safety and personal protection. This training requires adequate facilities both within the firehouse and outside with vehicle maneuverability, lighting and above all safety of the public and participants.
In 2002 the Owego Fire Department received a donation of property on McMaster Street from the Village of Owego. The site has been evaluated and construction begun for a training facility that meets the hands on training needs Fire, Rescue, and EMS personnel.
The benefits of a multifaceted training facility will be measured in lives saved throughout our community. The training that this facility will provide local firefighters, emergency service personnel, police agencies and even citizen groups, will help ensure a well rounded community that stands ready to meet the challenges of natural disaster, accidents, countywide threats, and providing many forms of support during the most difficult times of peoples’ lives.
Within the walls of this state of the art facility personnel will be exposed to real life emergencies under controlled conditions where mistakes will serve as learning tools and skills will be perfected each time the facility is used.
Currently, our county does not have a facility for our first responders to go to obtain a realistic training environment and receive the necessary instruction to perform their duties to the best of their ability. This project will consist of 6 separate elements located on the 2.2-acre site;
· An Adult Learning Center with three classrooms and a Physical Fitness area (Building under construction).
· A multi-use training/ live fire burn building. This will allow us to train on all facets of operations at a fire scene such as Fire Growth and Development, Fire Attack Methods/ Strategy, Search and Rescue Methods, Firefighter Survival/ Self Rescue, Ventilation Techniques and Ladder Usage and Placement. Additionally it will provide a place for Police forces to train on room entry, entering and containing methamphetamine labs and working with K9 Units.
· Tower for training on ladder operations, rope rescues, and operational safety in an elevated environment, including ventilation techniques and confined space awareness.
· Area to conduct vehicle fire and extrication techniques, as well as hazardous materials evolutions.
· Water sources including hydrants and cisterns to allow for instruction and training in water mechanics and pump operations.
· Driver training course to develop safe driving skills and techniques.
As you can see, the training facility will provide a stable platform for a wide range of training events at a very low maintenance cost. It is intended that this facility be available for use by all first responder agencies in Tioga and surrounding counties.
News coverage from the start of the Training Facility: