The Firemen’s Association of the State of New York (FASNY) today joined with elected officials, state and local government leaders, and emergency response representatives at the Colonie Municipal Training Center to kick off the 5th Annual Youth Firefighter Training Day.
The event was part of FASNY’s Annual Convention, in which more than 1,000 volunteer firefighters are attending various training and educational events in the Albany area. During “Youth Day,” approximately 100 fire department explorers and juniors from across the state participate in hands-on firefighter evolutions and exercises including Roof Ventilation, 2nd Floor Window Bailout, Engine Company Operations, Fire Extinguisher Operations, Timed Scoring, Search and Rescue Drills and Survival Skills.
“Our Youth Day Program highlights the future of our fire service, and is a critical tool in helping us recruit and retain new members,” said FASNY President James Burns. “This is the next generation of first responders and events like this, coupled with our year-round recruitment campaign, help us accomplish our goal of boosting the number of firefighters throughout the state.”
At the news conference, Colonie Town Supervisor Paula A. Mahan and Albany County District Attorney David Soares unveiled two houses that will be used for search and rescue training at the facility. The houses were donated by property owner Peter Campito of Campito Properties LLC, and moved to their current location with a variety of upgrades. The upgrades were made possible through the Albany County DA’s ‘Making Crime Pay Program,’ in addition to funds from the NYS Legislature supported by former Assembly Members Robert Reilly and Jack McEneny. ‘Making Crime Pay’ utilizes assets seized from criminals to support law enforcement and public safety initiatives.
The combined contributions to the facility ensure that first responders in the Capital Region have the most realistic tools needed to facilitate rescue training, simulating instances where a victim or fellow first responder are trapped in a fire or crisis situation. Law enforcement will utilize closed circuit audio visual equipment to assist in crime scene analysis and through many scenarios that a law enforcement agent could encounter.
Albany County District Attorney David Soares commented, “The use of this state-of-the-art training facility will assist local, state, and federal responders in enhancing the response to emergency situations. I am pleased to support this public safety effort and the lifesaving potential for our community.”
Said Colonie Town Supervisor Paula A. Mahan, “We in the Town of Colonie are very proud that FASNY has chosen to have its Youth Day here. The new training houses being unveiled today provide unique training opportunities, and I’m confident that the young people training in them today will have an enriching and rewarding experience. I also want to thank all those who made these new training houses possible – Mr. Peter Campito, former NYS Assemblymen Bob Riley and Jack McEneny, and District Attorney David Soares, as well as our own Fire Services Department for its leadership of this project,”
FASNY is in the midst of a multi-year, year-round, volunteer firefighter recruitment and retention program across New York State made possible by a $4.2 million United States Department of Homeland Security Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant that began in 2011. To learn more about the “Fire In You” recruitment campaign, visit www.fireinyou.org
For more information on the 141st FASNY Convention, including events, seminars and training demonstrations, please visit: www.fasny.com.