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FDIC 2008: The Importance of Training

Fri, 11 Apr 2008|

In his remarks at the start of the FDIC 2008 General Session, Bobby Halton addresses the importance of training.



And I. Ladies and gentlemen. Bobby -- Good morning. Welcome back to FDIC 2008. And today I would like to talk a little bit about the importance of meaningful and relevant training but before I begin I need to thank you all again -- your presence here today. And I understand that a few he may be more than just a little bit tired. From attending yesterday's incredible opening ceremonies for the music in the speech is really raise the bar for inspirational fire service messages. I'm always impressed by the caliber. Of the men and women who agree to share on the stage -- yesterday father -- start us off with a really emotionally uplifting prayer. The father was then followed by an incredible new mayor Greg Ballard. -- incredible new governor of old governor. Mitch Daniels great guy very far for -- friendly. And then we got to meet the new fire Marshal is state of Indiana our very own chief Jimmy -- -- -- big congratulations to Jimmie and they are martial. -- -- Mike Galliano who came up -- really spoke from his heart about the importance of understanding who we are. And then most importantly this room was really graced by a true American hero yesterday we had James O'Donnell. And we really -- James a debt of gratitude to -- really sets the example. Of -- element should live his life in service to others. You know I earnestly want to thank everyone who made yesterday I believe -- the most memorable openings of FDIC however. And we opened up the classrooms like kids -- candy store we raced out there we gorge ourselves on wisdom from some of the most passionate. Some most intelligent -- chapters in the world. We had a celebration Bruno and Norman. Yesterday which was just outrageous I don't know whether it tapped out -- alarm -- -- of the incidents either way I know those two cats are you haven't figured out they were just some more remarkable. And one last piece of business if you on if you will forgive my indulgence here. At best a few of the folks that help put this dog and pony show together and from their duties this morning so we could just recognize real quick. We couldn't do this show without the incredible leadership team we have -- while blatant church let I don't know if there -- probably out -- making money for us but they run this band of pirates and throughout there. Thank you guys but our world class sales team if you're in the room could just stand up -- -- -- order. In the room Joe stand up -- the. You know. -- -- the last three Nancy you Cologne. Consultant Ted silicon they've case you guys in the room Nancy and they're all out making money -- -- those guys. We had our web editor April -- -- Pete big feet Pete with a brand new kid commodity. A product manager -- number. We got -- -- conference coordinator ginger Amendola has her very first FDIC. Well. Associate editors of the magazine we got rob Maloney Derrick -- -- -- and our senior editor and associate editor for eighteen years Mary -- dip -- lieutenant. The other technical letter teams we got the professor Glenn Corbett -- Coleman might not go away and our brand new photo editor firefighter -- Dumars. I'll stand up for. And of course you got my best friend my work -- she -- really -- say that's my wife doesn't get upset. The real boss of fire engineering magazine the executive editor in the conference co director of FDIC miss Diane Feldman. Sorry. You look good kid. -- and also made the Spanish -- firefighters come to life my deepest thanks thank you so much justice to great show. And to all of you spent your time your money in your energy to be here with us. I sincerely thank you we really appreciate you coming. It -- tries this event. Sure thirst for knowledge that knowledge -- take home when you turn into training. This is the fire department instructors conference. And instructors of the real leaders the fire service not the managers downtown in the puzzle palace. What the leaders during training. We take that legalese of SOPs in the gobbling -- got a text books we translated into meaningful action on the fire ground. I had a chance to talk -- -- -- fielded a nice guy and I asked them what was his department doing to improve things on the -- ground. Says -- we're doing training. -- training a lot how is -- you know everything -- air management command everything. I'm sure he was sincere. But I'm also sure as I think you are but -- and our zeal to stay current. We forget what behaviors and what tools got us to the dance. Training has been and will always be the most important part of every firefighters life. -- -- firefighting. Our training means the difference between life and death literally. Training real training meaningful training can mean life for our citizens who we sworn to protect. And for our fellow firefighters who looked like them. Now lack of training can result in exactly the opposite. Death. On trained and I'm prepared firefighters are little used to citizens. Even less use that -- all of our lives. I'm sure that the founders. Who founded this gathering eighty years ago would be proud to see that it FDIC. We still understand that the basics. Remain -- true bedrock of our profession. They would be proud to see that -- -- loads were given just as much emphasis as the new technology like thermal imaging cameras and our modern next vacation equipment. Our founders would be proud to see that we still believe that the best firefighters. Our instructors and -- FDIC. We put you first we know what makes a good chief great is how much they teach and we know what makes a good department rate is how much they train. SOPs without training. Can't accomplish anything. And mission statements without action are just that words. Heroic saves and fantastic stops. Those are only made possible by great firefighters led by great firefighters and it's easy to talk about doing things. But -- -- FDIC we -- each other now. And that's what makes real training classes and revolutions that result in confidence. And discovery. Here -- FDIC we believe that life in baseball. There's no crying in training. We believe in building stronger smarter and healthier firefighters. Understand the risks and rewards -- light and nevertheless. Accept the challenge. We have faith in training because we know that we are destined to training to come to an understanding. Of all the issues we now face. The challenges in the -- round today are changing as quickly as our technologies are changing. And the problems are always -- exceed any firefighters capabilities to know at all. -- to make a difference we have to fully appreciate. All those challenges and drill and train until we can overcome -- You see our -- -- the first generation to fight fires and what's called a socio technical environment. And what socio technical means is that we've adopted high risk technology. In our efforts like air packs and thermal imaging cameras in our efforts to door work more effectively now I didn't say safely. With -- first generation to rely on this iris technology for our very survival. Now how we've adapted and how we've integrated that technology. In large part explains what structural firefighting has not become. Less dangerous and -- -- fact now may be more dangerous than any other time in history. And for as long as mankind reaches beyond today or tomorrow's gonna bring -- new challenges. New threats and new dangers and tragically. Good firefighters will be lost. The far service is always going to be dedicated to saving others -- protecting our fellow firefighters. And the fire service will always need you. The instructors to keep us one step ahead of our challenges. We know that in this room right now today you're the very ones who are gonna find the solutions -- the challenges that was struggling against. Answers that will give us the tools we need to recognize hostile fire behavior. Before -- comes in consumes us answers to the battles that we now face with trepidation. Your dedication and study will change that fear to confidence. -- we know. Because we have seen the results from FDIC. Generation after generation. I know because I've fought fires with you and I've made terrible mistakes. Everyone in this room who's been on the streets knows that making a mistake to a thinking firefighter. Is not about change. It's about seizing an opportunity to learn. To make changes to understand that experience and then to share all that lessons with others there's no shame in making a mistake. There is shame and hiding -- there's no shame and learning from your mistakes. But there is shame in repeating it. Or allowing others to repeat it. Focused and intense training that results from fire ground experience is gonna help us to collectively decide. What we consider to be operationally safe or effective practices. And a lack of experience can happen any time anybody's career. Because in this profession the unknowns are infinite. No one ever has and no one ever will know where all -- have seen or done it all. This makes learn all weekend for more serious fires so critical to our ability to improve. As instructors. Believe it or not -- the emotionally intelligent leaders of our -- service community. And our tactical training is catching up because of firefighters like you. -- firefighters aren't afraid to throw open the windows and doors when something serious happens in your accounts. All of us here today are students. And consequently because you're here today you're also instructors because those roles are for ever bonded as one. All of you -- -- already made the commitment to continuous improvement. And -- improvement at times will fall behind -- challenges there's no doubt but that just ignites our passion all that much more. Frightened bullies and defeating tormentors is a lot tougher than getting along with them but it's also a lot more rewarding. The bully fire would love to see -- power and be more concerned about our safety than others but that. Will never happen in the American fire service being the greatest demands that we embrace our church while humbly acknowledging our limitations. Because we know that -- training every day we will overcome them. The fire services standing together today and we are rejecting -- out there are some of them in our own ranks who would have us deny our honor who would have us deny our heritage and deny our legacy. We've only train every day reaffirming our dedication to protecting the week. The defenseless. And we accept the responsibility to live as an example to man's highest calling service to our fellow man. Every firefighter in this room understands that by being a firefighter that means you have to be someone who holds life -- -- precious. As only those of you -- in this room know because you're willing to risk your wrong. Training this week as real Brothers and sisters and be proud and -- of character. Refused to apologize to anyone who would have us question where we have been -- where we are going. And never allow anyone ever again who belongs to this proud and righteous family to ever say again that we are killing firefighters. That is absolute nonsense. What gets the most disgusting statement our industry and it must -- now we are not killing anyone and we never have killed anyone. The fire services save and everyone can and we're making the world a better place and we will never stop -- to be stronger and we will never stop trying to be more effective. And we will never stop becoming more and more care. We will never stop caring deeply because that's what firefighters do and to do any less to hold back even a little would be to deny -- true culture. Because ours is a culture of training ours is a culture of heroes ours is a culture of service a culture of -- Train hard Brothers and sisters. -- -- Live long live well and god bless the United States of America.

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