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Firefighters across the region graduate from Level 1 training program in Bridgetown

Fifteen firefighters from Kings, Annapolis, and Digby counties finished an intensive Level 1 training course hosted by the Annapolis County Fire Services Association over a number of months. Their graduation was held Dec. 9 at the Bridgetown Volunteer Fire Department hall.
Fifteen firefighters from Kings, Annapolis, and Digby counties finished an intensive Level 1 training course hosted by the Annapolis County Fire Services Association over a number of months. Their graduation was held Dec. 9 at the Bridgetown Volunteer Fire Department hall. - Lawrence Powell

BRIDGETOWN, N.S. - Fifteen firefighters from Kingston to Plympton and Gilbert’s Cove and most points in between graduated Dec. 9 from an intensive Level 1 training program that saw them do 145 hours of classroom time and about 35 hours of hands-on training.

The graduation ceremony was held at the Bridgetown Volunteer Fire Department with Annapolis County Fire Services Association handing out the certificates for their successful graduates.

ACFSA president Robbie Brown, registrar Hilliard Ewing, and vice-president Mike Lockett were on hand to congratulate the firefighters.

“The Annapolis County Fire Services Association for the past few years has had a program right here in Annapolis County,” said spokesman Daniel Cheeseman. “ Firefighter Level 1 is the fundamental training course that every firefighter should have to continue his or her career. All courses going forward build on this Firefighter Level 1 program.”

Local firefighters taught the Level 1 program.

“We had several instructors this year,” said Cheeseman. “We had Chris Howe out of Bear River. We had Justin Oliver out of Bridgetown fire. We had assistance from Earl Hebb, and then I believe Tim Hebb as well assisting with instruction.”

He said the students learned the basic things with firefighting.

“You start everything from basic firefighter behavior, fire safety and orientation,” he said. “In order to fight fire you have to understand it, and that’s part of this course – everything to the point of how fire behaves, to even different materials that it burns, and how buildings are constructed. These are the basic that are used in learning.”

Firefighters then start going into more detail on how to applied certain agents, and how to do certain techniques on the fire ground, he said.

It was the ACFSA’s biggest graduating class ever, said Ewing, who noted students covered a total of 22 modules. Those modules included orientation and history, firefighter safety, communications, building construction, fire behavior, breathing apparatus, portable extinguishers, ropes and knots, search and rescue, scene lighting, forcible entry, ground ladders, tactical ventilation, water supply, fire hose, fire streams, loss control, evidence preservation, hazmat awareness, and fire and safety initiatives.

The Graduates

Granduates were: Kyle Armstrong, Kingston; Stephane Elliott, Kingston; James Noble, Kingston; Jean-Luc Germain, Kingston; Pater Bates, Bridgetown; Jody Robicheau, Smith’s Cove; Josh Snyder, Smith's Cove; Braden Trimper, Plympton and Gilbert’s Cove; Dylan Francis, Smith’s Cove; Michael Rhora, Bear River; Ryan Schaffrick, Annapolis Royal; Jamie Batson, Lawrencetown; Meghan Redden, Lawrencetown; Damien Crouse, Nictaux; and James Sheaves, Nictaux.

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