8/3/2007 12:00 AM
Brayton Fire Training Field was ablaze as more than 4,000 emergency responders from throughout Texas and the world traveled to College Station to battle flames and the July heat during three summer Fire Training Schools. The annual schools are conducted each year at the 120-acre facility by the Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX).
The 41st Annual Spanish Fire Training School, held July 8-13, attracted nearly 700 Spanish-speaking firefighters from 18 nations - the largest enrollment in the past six years. Students participated in classes ranging from basic firefighting operations to hazardous materials response, and all classes were taught entirely in Spanish with the assistance of more than 200 guest instructors.
The 45th Annual Industrial Fire Training School was held July 15-20 and attracted more than 450 firefighters, hazmat and safety personnel. More than 200 guest instructors assisted with the school, which is geared toward industrial fire brigades and emergency response personnel in the petrochemical industry.
The 78th Annual Municipal Fire Training School - recognized as the oldest and largest event of its kind - drew nearly 2,000 emergency responders from towns and cities of all sizes, from small volunteer fire departments to firefighters from some of the state's largest metropolitan areas. About 500 guest instructors assisted with training and safety during the weeklong school, which was held July 22-27. Courses ranged from basic and advanced firefighting to rescue operations and fire officer development. The school was hosted by TEEX in conjunction with the State Firemen's and Fire Marshals' Association of Texas.
"What separates ours from the rest of the fire schools is that we have large, practical fire scenarios," said Division Director Les Bunte of TEEX's Emergency Services Training Institute. "It provides students with the realism you would encounter and gives them much more experience in a controlled environment."