New training system for Saba’s, Statia’s firemen

Twelve new firefighters started their training with the Caribbean Netherlands Fire Department.

SABA/ST. EUSTATIUS–The Caribbean Netherlands Fire Department BKCN started with the training of twelve new colleagues; three from Saba, two from St. Eustatius and seven from Bonaire, on January 28.

The new Fireman-A candidates will learn about fire control, technical aid and accidents involving dangerous substances. Additionally, in November the training for airplane and airport firefighting must be successfully completed after which the new colleagues will be deployed within the BKCN organisation.

The training no longer uses books but will be done through Electronic Learning Environment ELO. The theory is learned via computer and the Internet, using films, animations, brief texts, spoken stories and quizzes to check if the content is understood.

During sessions the theory is translated into practice through so-called “blended learning.” Many different types of work will be dealt with to prepare participants as well as possibilities for combatting fires.

Also, participants independently work on assignments to better understand the profession of a fireman and the fire-fighting organization. Per component progress interviews and intermediate tests are held to monitor the progress of participants. The modules are concluded with a practical exam.

The training is provided by in-house BKCN instructors led by Training Department Head Julius Melaan. BKCN is supported from a distance by Fire Department Training Institution BOGO in The Netherlands. For the medical components there is support from Fundashon Mariadal and during the exams from St. Maarten’s Fire Department.

In addition to the technical- and content-related elements of the training, time will also be devoted to sports and swimming skills. The participants also undergo a medical examination, an intensive fire-oriented sports test and should have their swimming certificate to ultimately be able to work for BKCN.

The (additional) training requires a great deal from BKCN and its employees. However, due to these investments BKCN remains up to date with the training of firefighters and developments in firefighting in The Netherlands, the organization said.

Source: The Daily Herald