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The CSFD Training Unit designs, manages, and evaluates professional development programs which enhance life safety for our firefighters and community. The Training Unit is responsible for the initial training of new trainees and for providing on-going professional development of both sworn and civilian personnel. We develop, deliver, and evaluate training programs to ensure that all individuals and operational teams within the department are able to perform their duties safely, effectively, and efficiently.

The CSFD Training Unit helps the CSFD maintain a reputation as a nationally-recognized fire service leader by providing programs that consistently meet or exceed current industry standards. We work to develop innovative programs, keeping the organization on the leading edge of fire and life safety service delivery.

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Training Academy

The entry level trainees go through a 20-week Training Academy. Our Training Academies are designed to meet the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standard 1001. Academy graduates receive the following national certifications: Wildland Firefighter Red Card, HazMat Operations, and Firefighter I. Upon successful completion of one year probation, new firefighters will be certified to the Firefighter II level.

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Driver Program

A 7-week Relief Driver Academy is offered and designed to meet the NFPA 1002 Standard. Attendees include both CSFD and surrounding area fire department personnel. Upon successful completion, the candidate will be eligible to take the nationally recognized Driver Operator Pumper and Driver Operator Aerial certification exams. Other training includes in-house promotional testing for the position of Driver/Engineer; continuing education classes; evaluating incumbent drivers; providing Trailer Towing Awareness classes, including classroom and skills portion; and driver training to the Training Academy: Light Vehicle, Trainee Pumper Operations, Brush Truck, and Off Road.

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Officer Academy

The CSFD Officer Academy is a 7-week program in which the officer candidate will complete Fire Officer I and II performance evaluation sheets that are designed to meet the NFPA 1021 Standard. After the 7-week program, the officer candidate will be “mentored” by the company officer and battalion chief for at least 30 emergency responses and 6 shifts. A few areas in which the officer candidate will be evaluated on  in incident management include: structure fires, medical incidents, traffic accidents, hazmat incidents, interpersonal skills, customer service, report writing, training, staffing decision, public education, and CTS entry. The Officer Candidate Evaluation Form will be used and signed off by the company officer and battalion chief to evaluate the individual on these critical elements. Upon successful completion, the candidate will be eligible to take the nationally recognized Fire Officer I and II certification exams.

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Officer Development Program

The Officer Development Program is designed to train incumbent officers in the areas of Fire/Rescue/EMS, HazMat tactics, Safety, Scene Management, NIMS, Human Resource issues, Employee Development, and Team Building. New skills and techniques are learned as well as current skills enhanced. This program utilizes the NFPA 1021 and 1500 Standard as a guide along with various City and internal policies and procedures.

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Safety Officer Program

The Battalion Chief assigned to the Training Unit is also the designated Safety Officer for the department. The Training Unit has been instrumental in the training of all Battalion Chiefs, HazMat Officers, and Decon Officers as nationally certified Incident Safety Officers. Four members of the Training Unit staff sit on the CSFD’s Safety Committee and one member on the City of Colorado Springs Safety Committee.

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National Incident Management System (NIMS) Program

NIMS is a standardized approach to incident management and response. The NIMS framework is designed to apply to all incidents, regardless of their size or complexity. NIMS training is required for all federal, state, local, tribal, private sector, and non-governmental personnel who have a direct role in emergency management and response. The Training Division is in charge of ensuring that all first responders with the CSFD are educated in NIMS and certified based on their roles and responsibilities.

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Colorado Metropolitan Certification Board

The Colorado Metropolitan Certification Board (CMCB) was established in 1995 with four original departments with the purpose of managing the firefighter professional certification process for the member departments. Today, CMCB has six member departments: Aurora, Denver, Colorado Springs, West Metro Fire Protection District, Poudre Fire Authority, and Union Colony Fire Rescue Authority. CMCB has governing authority for the creation, management, and auditing of all certification programs under its sanction. CMCB is accredited under the National Board on Fire Service Professional Qualifications (ProBoard). Currently, the CMCB Administrator is housed at the Colorado Springs Fire Department.

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