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Airport downtime offer training window for AFRS

The Airport Fire and Rescue Service (AFRS) has made use of the reduced airline schedule to carry out essential elements of its mandated training including successfully sending three of its firefighters to complete Incident Command courses at the Fire Service College.

Firefighters Daniel Cornelio, Lee Muscat and Jonathan Falero were the three who undertook the week-long course in the Gloucestershire-based college, completing elements which encompassed theoretical instruction and the use of virtual reality software to account for the variety of incident simulations which they needed to practice on.

The Airport Fire and Rescue Service said this knowledge, when combined with their practical training, has helped prepare them well towards achieving good overall results in their final assessments.

“The experiences gained throughout such a comprehensive course has prepared them well in their first stage of the essential decision-making skills necessary for operational commanders who will be expected to lead fire crews operationally at their respective level,” the AFRS said in a statement.

“The three firefighters have now achieved a Skills for Justice Award in Initial Incident Command (ICL 1) in Fire and Rescue Services, which are UK nationally recognised qualifications.”

The refresher and update sessions on fire service operational matters and Incident Command were provided remotely by SimTrainer UK Ltd and its tutoring team of “highly experienced” fire officers.

The SimTrainer sessions also mark the first time that a full online training course was delivered to the AFRS.

“Instruction and updated information was received on fire service related topics and also presented with a range of virtual reality incident simulations,” said the AFRS.

“Fire Crews worked in syndicates to identify and address all risks, hazards and other relevant matters and allow them to formulate a safe and effective action plan.”

“Firefighters were subsequently assessed at the standard expected for their respective rank with very positive feedback coming from the assessors on the levels of knowledge and performance they had witnessed.”

The AFRS also commented on the usefulness of the SimTrainer sessions especially when considering the existence of Covid-19 and the level of training provided on the online course.

The Airport Fire and Rescue Service said: “These sessions have gone some way to address the training, knowledge and understanding required of the AFRS, something which it is mandated to undertake for recertification purposes within the aviation industry.”

“On-site practical assessments will be carried out with SimTrainer UK further ahead once the situation changes and it is safe for the instructors to travel.”