“The Baden Fire Dept is focused on a sponsorship type approach in efforts to procure & utilize funds efficiently to provide a training facility for use by multidisciplinary groups, ultimately meeting higher training objectives and strengthening relationships to provide a quality public service.”
Objective: Development of standardized training tactics, philosophies, and procedures.
With the evolving industries in relation to the economic situations, the need for ongoing training is imperative. In many instances the need for multidisciplinary response is necessary to mitigate hazards of multiple categories. Examples include: fire response, hazardous materials, rescue, technical rescue, and utility control. The modern day incidents have vastly changed from previous times, challenging local emergency responders with many obstacles.
Geographically, the area lacks a facility to conduct safe, efficient training. The proposed facility will be one of a kind within nearly a 25 mile radius. This will provide local access for many organizations, reducing costs and reducing risks. In addition, many remote training sites utilize facility equipment, and the inability for departments to remove equipment from their own municipalities, is not ideal; This results in members training on or with unfamiliar equipment. With a more local facility, departments will be able to utilize their own equipment to train.
In years past, in order to conduct realistic training, departments, if possible, could acquire an abandoned structure for training. In many instances, individuals are exposed to carcinogenic products including asbestos, molds, and other unknown parasites which may have existed in the structure prior to abandonment. With firefighting gear costing more than two thousand dollars a set, this poses the risk of damaging gear increasing in repair or replacement costs. A new dedicated training facility will provide the realistic training possibilities without the risks associated with acquired structures.
Following 9/11, one of the local training sites located at First Energy in Beaver County was locked from agency access in coordination with the Homeland Security Act. This facility was utilized by many until this change occurred.
Facility and Grounds
The Baden Fire Training Center will include:
- Three story concrete structure with simulated smoke capabilities, offering training scenarios for interior structural firefighting tactics to include ventilation, forcible entry, search and rescue, hose line advancement, and ground ladder operations.
- Interior simulators will enable search and rescue operation drills, including movable walls and floors.
- Interior “high-rise” stairwell, and exterior stairwell.
- High angle rescue area with rope anchor points, confined space rescue simulator.
- Exterior to include fire department connection, standpipe, and sprinkler systems.
The training grounds have been designed with the space and features necessary to meet today’s training needs including but not limited to:
- A trench rescue simulator.
- Hazmat decontamination area.
- Underground water storage with hydrant system; integrated water recycling
- flow control.
- Adjacent vehicle extrication area.
Future expansion will be possible with ongoing support.
History of the Project
Baden Fire/Rescue has long been known for being a progressive company. Actively involved in all aspects of technical rescue, vehicle extrication, hazardous materials response, and of course, fire suppression; it is only natural that the company continue to raise the standard in community service.
The Baden Volunteer Fire Department shows their exemplary commitment to the community by having achieved and maintains an ISO Class 4 fire insurance rating. The different class ratings are directly related to the departments staffing, training, and equipment maintained by the fire department.
Since 2010, the department has successfully recruited, trained, and certified five new
members – a trend that contradicts the national averages. Additionally, through private and public funding, as well as state and federal grants, 25 members have been certified to National Pro-Board on Fire Service Professional Qualifications – Firefighter I standards (NFPA 1001) in 2011. 10 of them have further gone on to certify at Firefighter II standards in 2012. Over the past 3 years, some members have also tested and successfully obtained NBFSPQ Certifications as Fire Service Instructors, Technical Rescuer Technicians (multiple disciplines), and Hazardous Materials Technicians.
Planning and Acquisition
Late in 2011, the officers and members of the Baden Volunteer Fire Department again solidified their commitment to training by deciding to secure a dedicated fire training center, and a planning committee was formed. The department expressed their interest and intentions to the Borough of Baden, looking for municipal support.
In 2012, the Baden Volunteer Fire Department acquired a large parcel of undeveloped property on Tevebaugh Road that previously belonged to the Baden Municipal Authority.
Now, early 2013, it is the belief of the BVFD, that regional fire training, justification for a training center, and possible funding mechanisms are specific, measurable, attainable, reachable and time sensitive. The planning committee is aggressively developing a site plan and cost estimates.
The BVFD has gained the support of the community and neighboring fire service organizations for this project. Part of the motivation for their support was to encourage regional concepts.
The BVFD has agreed and pledged to provide its own funds for construction costs. However, the BVFD is seeking assistance via funding and support as well as sponsorships to achieve the facility’s production successfully and to its entirety. The estimated cost of this project is $100,000. The department has already established a dedicated account to aid in the funding of this project. Support from the Baden Fire Department will be ongoing. WE ARE SEEKING YOUR SUPPORT!
The Baden Volunteer Fire Department is a federally recognized 501(c)(3) not-forprofit organization dedicated to the protection of the residents of Baden and surrounding communities. This is IRS Code section applies to tax exemption for volunteer fire departments. This determination under 501(c)(3) is for any “charitable, religious or scientific” organization, which, includes volunteer fire departments.
Exemptions allow for tax deductible donations and is broad in its exemptions – most grant agencies look for 501(c)(3) status in awarding grants since these organizations are considered charities. Completed in 2012, this not-for-profit status now allows the department to seek funding from a much larger pool of contributors that were previously limited by law.
Construction is set to begin mid to late 2013. Meetings will take place as necessary with officials and planning committee members to discuss construction issues and to keep the project on track. Construction is expected to be completed by fall of 2014.
The facility, once completed, will be available to any local assets which may benefit from its use. The Baden Fire Department, the Training Facility Committee and coordinators will oversee the scheduling, use, and maintenance of the facility. In cooperation with our insurance company requests, the facility will have a strict NO-BURN POLICY. Artificial smoke simulation will be permitted only for training purposes in efforts to control and reduce risk management. Facility usage will follow appropriate guidelines to ensure occupant safety during any and all operations conducted on site.
The facility will be available for local agencies access for general agency conducted training evolutions. In addition the site will be developed with capabilities for a Professional Certification Site. This will enable Local Level PSFA Instructors to conduct SFA courses on site locally.
Expenses / Budget
Once the site is complete, the ongoing maintenance and upkeep will be overseen by the BVFD Facility Committee and coordinators. The committee will collect a fee for usage from each agency in efforts to replace consumable materials for training purposes. This will not limit agency access or facility capabilities as our continued focus will be the capability to conduct realistic training drills with reduced risk management.
The Baden Fire Department has committed to establish a local training facility for access by multidisciplinary departments. The department has committed many man hours and dedication to initiating the funding of this project. However in efforts to see this project complete and accessible in a timely fashion we are seeking your support and assistance.
This facility will be one of a kind in the local area, with the anticipation of it being monumental. Access for many agencies will aid in the development of higher trained emergency responders for an array of emergency incidents, thus allowing for quicker, safer, and more efficient mitigation of hazards and emergency incidents.
Thank you for your time and attention in this matter! We look forward to working with your organization.
Baden Fire Department
Training Facility Committee