IRECA: June conference expands competition

Smith Brayton Fire Training Field in College Station, TX is an internationally recognized emergency response training center.
Offering something a little different every year has been the guiding principle behind planning the International Rescue and Emergency Care Association conference. However, the 71st Annual Conference & Challenges being held June 17 through 21, 2019 in College Station, TX represents a more ambitious leap for IRECA. With Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service’s (TEEX) Brayton Fire Training Field and Disaster City® as its location, the conference is expanding the number of teams competing in its rescue challenges from six to 12, said past IRECA president and conference chairman Gary Leafblad.  “Doubling the number of teams in one year represents a big gamble for us,” Leafblad said. The last IRECA conference was conducted in Boise, ID using the Amalgamated Sugar refinery as the setting for the challenges involving seven-member technical rescue teams and four-member first response rescue teams. There was also a basic life support challenge open to three-member level teams. Moving...
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Class Act: Firefighters change training schedule to accommodate Bush funeral

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Former President George H.W. Bush, 94, was laid to rest Dec. 6 at his presidential library in College Station, TX. His death was a tragedy for the nation and played havoc with the planned schedule for the winter Hellfighter U fire training at the nearby Brayton Fire Training Field. “We’re forced into scrambling the agenda and rearranging the curriculum in a sequence we’ve never utilized before,” Hellfighter U director Frank Bateman said. The changes also meant sacrificing a portion of the open discussion time to discuss such hot button issues as prioritizing performance and firefighter safety in the controversy concerning firefighting foam and the environment. “What I say is if you’re going to put your life on the line using firefighting foam, make sure it performs,” Bateman said. “I want to incorporate that into the criteria for foam testing.” PHOS-CHEK ™ , the company behind Hellfighter U, offers a full range...
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