Basseterre, St. Kitts, March 08, 2019 (SKNIS): The Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting Introduction Training Course concluded on Friday, March 08, 2019, marking the end of five days of intense training that enhanced the basic knowledge and skills of 18 officers in the St. Kitts and Nevis Fire and Rescue Services (SKNFRS).
The participants were drawn from various divisions of the SKNFRS in order to ensure that officers from other stations can effectively assist emergency efforts involving an aircraft whether at the R. L. Bradshaw International Airport in St. Kitts, or the V. W. Amory International Airport in Nevis. The training will also prove useful if the emergency occurs outside of an aerodrome.
Course participant Fire Officer (FO) Ryan Bloice has been stationed at R. L. Bradshaw International Airport for the past 10 years. He commended the trainers and said that the course material was very demanding as the group had to complete written assignments that were given at the close of each day. The following morning, the group also had to complete a written test. The training culminated with a simulated aircraft fire and rescue exercise on Friday.
“The team performed at a satisfactorily level, Mr. Bloice said, while commenting on the practical training. “There is room for improvement like with all things and with more practice and more theory we will get better.”
FO Amal Richards works at the V.W.A. in Nevis. He said the aircraft familiarization sessions covered aircraft operated by American Airlines and Amerijet, that fly regularly into the twin-island Federation, was particularly useful.
Filesha Sutton and Laurisa Emmanuel are the only two female fire officers who participated in the training. FO Sutton shared that the course was quite challenging but said that she was motivated to complete training. With March 08 being celebrated as International Women’s Day, FO Emmanuel said “We are here to make women proud and show that anything men can do women can do just as well or better.”
Fire Station Officer Lennox Griffin, who oversees operations at the airport saluted the participants for embracing the training. He noted that the team worked hard and shared that several members from the group will be chosen for advanced training in Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting in Canada in the near future.
The SKNFRS will host additional training courses this year including urban and land search and rescue; fist aid; hazmat awareness training, and leadership training for frontline and middle managers.