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Muncipal and volunteer firefighters from across Texas and the country will be calling College Station home for the next week.

Reed Arena welcomed them for the final week of a month long fire training program hosted by TEEX at the world’s premiere live fire training facility, Brayton Fire Training Field. TEEX’s Division Director of Emergency Services Training Institute Les Bunte said firefighters recognize the reputation of Brayton.

“We’re recognized internationally throughout the world as being that, so this is a great benefit, particularly to Texas firefighters,” Bunte said.

In order to get ready for the activities ahead of them, TEEX officials organized a trade show for the firefighters. 117 vendors from throughout the country displayed the latest in equipment upgrades and improvements.

“This allows vendors of new and modern type of fire technology equipment to be introduced to the firefighters,” Bunte said.

However, once the vendors pack up, hands on fire training begins. The purpose of the fire training school is to raise the level of expertise of firefighters. That is something Alvin Fire Department’s Chief Rex Kelsel wants his firefighters to have.

“Everything that is taught here we take back home and in used at home from everything from the firefighting to rescue to the incident command,” Kelsel said.

One course, Chief Kelsel is particularly interested in his firefighters taking–is firefighter safety.

“You can get killed real easy,” Kelsel said. “So, they teach that, they stress that here and we take it back home.”

Training though is not limited to situations with fire.

“There’s certainly all types of rescue training activities that are going on from confined spaces, to trench rescue to high angle rescue types of things,” Bunte said. “Hazardous materials training also as well.”

After this week participants should be fired up to be even better at their jobs. Friday is the last day of training.

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Kathy Fraser

Director of Marketing and Communications

I would strongly recommend this course. I found it extremely informative, effective, and relevant to my job as a bomb technician.

— Advanced Ordnance Recognition for Law Enforcement
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