April Roundtable: Computers and Training

To what extent, if any, does your department use computers in your daily training or do you personally use the Internet to supplement your training Please post your responses in the comments section below.

The question for this month fits very conveniently with this very article. In fact, it caused me to pause and think about what may have changed in my career if the Internet was available when I was a young firefighter. I can remember as a young lieutenant racking my brain trying to come up with in-service/in-station drills for my crew. Now I look at what is available out there on the Internet related to fire service training. It is simply fascinating what you can pull up on sites like FireEngineering.com. There are dozens of articles and thousands of photos and videos to view and dissect with your crew.

Prior to my retirement, the Toledo (OH) Fire Department, along with most all departments, were required to take the NIMS compliance courses online. The class and a testing process to certify compliance were available through federal Web sites. Now, you can receive continuing education credits form the Fire Engineering University

That brings me to this month’s question. Login and share your comments below. John “Skip” Coleman retired as assistant chief from the Toledo (OH) Department of Fire and Rescue. He is a technical editor of Fire Engineering; a member of the FDIC Educational Advisory Board; and author of Incident Management for the Street-Smart Fire Officer (Fire Engineering, 1997), Managing Major Fires (Fire Engineering, 2000), and Incident Management for the Street-Smart Fire Officer, Second Edition (Fire Engineering, 2008).

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