The Roanoke Valley Regional Fire & EMS Academy #22, consisting of 13 personnel representing Roanoke County, recently graduated at Valley Word Church. Each recruit was called to the stage and pinned with their official firefighter badge.
The academy was a result of Roanoke County Fire & Rescue receiving over $1 million in grant money from the Department of Homeland Security’s Staffing for Adequate Fire & Rescue (SAFER) program. The cost-sharing grant allowed for the funding of 11 personnel. The additional personnel will bring the Department’s staffing needs up to minimum levels.
The thirteen individuals representing Roanoke County Fire & Rescue spent 20 weeks and nearly 1,000 hours receiving instruction and practical training in the areas of basic firefighting skills and emergency medical service (EMS) instruction. The fire training included building construction, forcible entry, ventilation, search and rescue and hazardous material operations, just to name a few.
The EMS training included: basic anatomy and physiology, medical trauma assessments, diabetic difficulties, cardiac, respiratory, heat and cold emergencies, how to use a variety of medical equipment and the importance of patient rights. The Academy ended with a live-burn at the Roanoke Valley Regional Fire & EMS Training Center (RVRTC) where recruits were able to test their practical skills. Most of the training was completed at the RVRTC located on Kessler Mill Road in Roanoke County.
The graduates received their station assignments immediately following the ceremony, and began their first station shift this past Monday.
Bringing the fire and EMS departments together to learn, train and grow provides consistency among all firefighter/EMS personnel – whether stationed in City of Roanoke, Roanoke County or the City of Salem – minimizing costs to each jurisdiction through shared instructors and equipment.
The Roanoke Valley Regional Fire & EMS Training Center is a partnership between Roanoke County, the City of Roanoke, the City of Salem and the Town of Vinton; and is a continuing effort to enhance fire and EMS safety operations and to improve the delivery of these critical services through better training. It creates a system that allows for each area to have access to a state-of-the-art facility, as well as the sharing of resources to include specialized instructors and equipment, resulting in greater productivity region-wide.
Graduates of Academy #22
Ronald Akers Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Andrew Amos Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Jacob Dodson Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Michael Firestone Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Sean Forrest Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Kyle Johnson Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Tim Marshall, II Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Dustin Rice Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
James Slater Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Zachary Snider Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Adam Varian Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Nicholas Walker Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
Francis Wolowski, Jr. Roanoke County Fire & Rescue
-Submitted by Jennifer Sexton, Roanoke County PR Coordinator