Details of Courses Offered-Lower South West Training

How to read this document
Find the course(s) you are interested in and then and then look at the calendar for the dates and venues offered. Then go to the description of each course further in this document if you want to find out what it is about. Details about the application form are at the end.

Courses offered to bushfire brigade members  are:
INTRODUCTION TO FIREFIGHTING AND BUSH FIREFIGHTING(3),

STRUCTURAL FIREFIGHTING (2),

ON ROAD DRIVING (3),

OFF ROAD DRIVING (2),

AIIMS IV(1),

FIRE CONTROL OFFICER (1),

FIRE CONTROL OFFICER REFRESHER (1),

MACHINE SUPERVISION (1) ,

ADVANCED BUSHFIRE FIGHTING (1),

CREW LEADER (1) ,

CREW LEADER ADVANCED BUSH FIRE (1),

PLANTATION FIREFIGHTING (1),

SECTOR COMMANDER (1),

GROUND CONTROLLER(2),

FIRE INCIDENT REPORTING SYSTEM(FIRS) (2),

GENERIC LEADERSHIP(1),

MANAGE INJURIES(2),

LEVEL 1 INCIDENT CONTROLLER (2),

HOT FIRE (1).
•    Note: The LSW course Introduction to Firefighting and Bushfire Fighting is 3 days. I  am checking if this is the same as the Introduction to Fire Fighting course and the Bushfire Fighting courses run locally by the City of Busselton.
Some courses you should be interested in include –

For becoming more competent in your wildfire bushfire fighting and safety –
•    Introduction to Fire Fighting – for new members and refreshers. Also for auxiliaries (optional).
•    Bushfire Fighting – for new members and refreshers. Also for auxiliaries (optional).
•    Advanced Bushfire Fighting.
•    Crew Leader.
•    (or combined Crew Leader/Advanced Bushfire Fighting).
•    Manage Injuries.
•    Sector Commander
•    Structural Firefighting
•    Plantation Firefighting
•    Hot Fire.
For your enhanced capabilities and advancement through the brigade
•    On Road Driving
•    Off Road Driving
•    Machine Supervision
•    Fire Control Officer
•    Ground Controller
•    Generic Leadership
Understanding how the emergency services communicate and deal with incidents
•    AIIMS
•    Incident Controller
Full details including dates, locations and course descriptions follow.

DECRIPTION OF COURSES OFFERED TO BUSHFIRE BRIGADE MEMBERS

INTRODUCTION TO FIREFIGHTING
Basic description:
This 2 day course is for new members to become firefighters and also should be of interest to other members who want to refresh or update their knowledge of current techniques and other factors affecting firefighters. It is optional for auxiliaries.
Wear old gear for lugging hoses in the dirt or bring along your uniform to put on during that part of the session.
DFES describes the course as follows –
“To provide volunteer firefighters with the appropriate knowledge and skills to undertake firefighting operations safely, efficiently and confidently.”
Course content is –
•    Teamwork and safety
•    Basic fire theory
•    Incident command and control
•    Radio communications
•    Use and maintain equipment
Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done Volunteer Firefighter Induction.
BUSHFIRE FIGHTING
Basic description –
This 1 day course is the second part of the qualifications for new members and also should be of interest to other members for the same reasons as above. It is optional for auxiliaries.
Wear old gear for lugging hoses in the dirt or bring along your uniform to put on during that part of the session.

DFES describes this course as follows –
“To provide volunteer firefighters with the appropriate knowledge and skills to undertake bush fire firefighting operations safely, efficiently and confidently.”

Course content is –
•    Bush fire behaviour
•    Bush fire suppression
•    Map reading
•    Bush fire safety awareness
•    Hand tools.

Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done –
•    Volunteer Firefighter Induction
•    Introduction to Firefighting

STRUCTURAL FIRE FIGHTING
Basic Description:
This 2 day course used to be mainly for Fire and Rescue firefighters as it involves techniques to extinguish house and other structural fires but has been extended to bush firefighters.
The Margaret River and the Cheese Factory fires showed that our firefighters  may come across a house fire or be told to protect one from an approaching bushfire.

Note that VFRS members are also offered this course so places may be limited.

DFES describes the course as follows –
“Provides volunteer firefighters with the appropriate knowledge and skills to undertake external , defensive firefighting operations safely, efficiently and confidently. Course content is –
•    Proceeding to the fire.
•    Structural Fire behaviour.
•    Extinguishing methods (includes fire extinguishers).
•    Ancillary equipment (includes ropes, knots, lines and ladders).
•    Combating structural fires.
•    Ancillary operations.
Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done –
•    Introduction to Firefighting
•    Bush Firefighting.

ON ROAD DRIVING
This 2 day course involves theory and what your rights are driving an emergency vehicle and practical driving around town in a fire truck or light tanker and on a set driving course with witches hats and reversing.
Note that SES and VFRS members are also offered this course, so places will be competitive.
DFES describes the purpose of this course , as follows –
To provide volunteers with the knowledge and skills to drive vehicles safely including the systematic, safe and efficient control of all vehicle functions and effective management of hazardous situations under operational conditions.
Course content:
•    Vehicle support systems;
•    Pre-use checks;
•    Emergency vehicle legislation;
•    Defensive driving.
•    Trailers (optional).
Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done –
•    Introduction to Firefighting and Bush Firefighting; and
•    Hold a licence for the vehicle to be used (car licence for fast attack vehicle, light rigid licence for 1:4 or heavy vehicle licence for  4:4 or similar).

OFF ROAD DRIVING
This is a serious but fun course 4WDriving on sand and fire trails in the hills. Not for the faint hearted but is invaluable in illustrating how far our vehicles can go in rough terrain. Generally only light tankers are used so skills may be limited for driving heavier vehicles.
Note that SES and VFRS members are also offered this course, so places will be competitive.
DFES describes the purpose of this course  as follows:
To provide volunteers with the knowledge and skills to drive vehicles off road safely and efficiently.
Course  content:
•    Vehicle manoeuvring.
•    Basic all wheel drive vehicles and driving principles.
•    Stall recovery.
•    Steep ascents and descents.
•    Cross country driving.
•    Negotiating obstacles.
•    Basic vehicle recovery.
To be selected for this course, you should have done –
•    On Road Driving (or Introduction to Driving or equivalent).
•    Hold a licence for the vehicle to be used (car licence for fast attack vehicle, light rigid licence for 1:4 or heavy vehicle licence for 4:4 or similar). Note: mostly light tanker is used.

FIRE CONTROL OFFICER 
Note that VFRS members are also offered this course so places may be limited.

Basic description –
The holder of this qualification can be expected to have or aspire to attain a most senior position and a leader of the brigade. The person also issues permits on behalf of the City of Busselton  and inspects properties before doing so. While our brigade currently has 3 FCOs, it is important other members attain this qualification for progression to this position or have a desire to gain knowledge to this level.
DFES describes the purpose of this course, as follows–
To provide potential or appointed FCOs with the knowledge and skills required to undertake their role in local government. Course content is –
•    WA Fire Services
•    Legislation, powers and authority
•    The role of the Fire Control Officer (FCO)
•    Permits
•    Principles of AIIMS
•    Bush fire incident arrangements
•    Occupational health and safety
•    Local issues
Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done –
•    Introduction to Fire Fighting
•    Bushfire Fighting
(Note: it is also useful if you have done –
•    An  AIIMS course
•     Advanced Bushfire Fighting
and have been an active member for 5 years.

FIRE CONTROL OFFICER  REFRESHER
Note that VFRS members are also offered this course so places may be limited.

Basic description –
This course is a refresher for FCOs who have previously done the FCO course.
DFES describes the purpose of this course, as follows–
To provide appointed FCOs with updated information, knowledge and skills required to undertake their role in a local government.  Course content is –
•    Bush fire legislation.
•    Role and powers of a FCO.
•    Permits.
•    AIIMs update.
•    Bush fire incident arrangements.
•    Local issues.
Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done the Fire Control Officer course. If not you should attend that course instead.
And have been an active brigade member for 5 years.

MACHINE SUPERVISION
Note that VFRS members are also offered this course so places may be limited.

Basic description –
Dozers, loaders  and other heavy machinery are used in large fires to build containment lines, fight pockets of fire and assist with mop-up. This course trains you to decide when machines are necessary and how to acquire and use them on the fire ground.

DFES describes the course as follows –
“Provides volunteer firefighters with the knowledge and skills to supervise and assist machine operations at an incident. Machines may include dozers, graders, front end loaders or a tractor with plough. Course content is –
•    Machines in fire control operations
•    Role of machine supervisors
•    Machines used in fireline construction
•    Techniques for bush fire attack
•    Location and construction of the control lines
•    Mop-up and rehabilitation
•    Pre-planning and use of machines
•    Briefings and monitoring performance
Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done –
•    Introduction to Firefighting
•     Bush Firefighting
•    and either Crew leader or Sector Commander
and it is recommended you have also completed
•    Advanced Bush Fire Fighting
and been an active member for 3 years.

Also, as is for experienced firefighters, the brigade needs to approve your nomination.

ADVANCED BUSHFIRE FIGHTING
Note: Also available as a 2 day course Crew Leader/Advanced Bushfire ( see below)
As it suggests this course deals with a host of factors involved in a fire and improves a firefighter’s ability to fight a wildfire under difficult and changing conditions.
While the course name and contents may appear daunting and you would expect the class to consist of experienced firefighters, the recent experience of Duncan and I shows this is not the case. The course we attended was mainly lesser experienced firefighters wanting to learn about improving their abilities, some having been in a brigade for one or two years. So most of you would qualify for this course. It is the next firefighting course offered after doing the basic Intro and Bushfire courses when you joined.
Note that VFRS members are also offered this course so places may be limited.

DFES describes the purpose of this course, as follows –
To provide volunteer firefighters with advanced knowledge of bush fire behaviour and suppression that builds on their current competencies as a bush fire fighter.
Course content –
•    Travelling to the fire.
•    Characteristics of fire behaviour.
•    Weather and fire behaviour.
•    Topography and fire behaviour.
•    Fire suppression techniques in different fuel types.
•    Backburning and burning out.
•    Procedures for co-ordinating mopping up a bush fire.
•    Fire ground safety.
Pre-requisites – to be selected to do this course you should have done –
•    Introduction to Fire Fighting
•     Bush Firefighting
and have been an active member for 3 years (flexible).
CREW LEADER
Note: Also available as a 2 day course Crew Leader/Advanced Bushfire ( see below)
Note that VFRS members are also offered this course so places may be limited.

The following description is for Crew Leader Bushfire so because VFRS is also invited, it may be more general than for bushfire operations. I will make further enquiries for those who nominate.

Basic description:
Every Fire Appliance which is responding to a fire callout should have a crew leader who responds appropriately to extinguishment of the fire while protecting safety of the crew.

DFES describes the course as follows –
“Provides Crew Leaders with the knowledge and skills required to work autonomously in leading their crew or controlling a small bush fire incident safely, effectively and efficiently using the principles of the Australasian Inter-Service Incident Management System (AIIM S).
The course contains –
•    Role and responsibility of a Crew Leader.
•    Scheduling and monitoring crew performance.
•    Principles of AIIMS and management structure.
•    Effective crew management and briefings.
•    Consultation, communication and planning.
Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done –
•    Introduction to Fire Fighting
•    Bushfire Fighting
•     Advanced Firefighting or its  equivalent old system course
and have been an active member for more than 2 years.

PLANTATION FIREFIGHTING
Note that VFRS members are also offered this course so places may be limited.

There are a number of timber plantations in our area and we may also get called to fight fires in plantations outside our area. Plantations provide their own special challenges including access.
DFES describes the purpose of this course, as follows –
To provide volunteer firefighters who undertake plantation firefighting with the knowledge and skills to safely and effectively undertake the relevant suppression techniques.
Course content is –
•    Plantation fuel characteristics
•    Plantation life cycles
•    Weather factors in plantations of different ages
•    Plantation management practices
•    Methods of fire suppression in plantation fires
•    Hose lay and relay pumping in plantations
•    Hand tools in plantations.
Duration:    1 day combined theory and practice.
Pre-requisites – to be selected to do this course you should have done –
•    Introduction to firefighting
•    Bushfire Fighting
and it is recommended you have been an active member for 2 to 3 years.

SECTOR COMMANDER
Note that VFRS members are also offered this course so places may be limited.

When a fire affects a large area it is usually too big for a single officer to control all fire appliances and firefighters on the ground. In such cases, the fire area is broken up into “sections” of two, three or four areas, each of which has an officer controlling the fire effort in their section with up to 5 fire appliances to manage. These persons are “sector commanders” under the control of the incident controller.
DFES describes the purpose of this course as follows –
To provide Sector Commanders with the knowledge and skills to command a sector at an incident safely, effectively and efficiently, using the principles of AIIMS.
Course content
•    Principles of sectorisation and the roles and responsibilities of Sector Commander.
•    Incident management.
•    Communications planning.
•    Situation Reports.
•    Incident briefings.
•    Managing a sector.
Pre-requisites – to be selected to do this course you should have done –
•    Introduction to Fire Fighting and Bushfire Fighting or old units equivalents.
•    Crew Leader Bush Fire.
•    Advanced Bushfire Fighting.
•    AIIMS Awareness or Introduction to AIIMS.
(Some of the above may be optional)
and have been an active member for 3-4 years.
Also, as this is for experienced firefighters, the brigade needs to approve your nomination

GROUND CONTROLLER
Basic description –
This is the person at the fire scene who communicates with and directs fire bombers and helicopters where to drop the fire suppressant.

DEFS describes the course as follows –
“Provides volunteer firefighters with knowledge and skills to undertake the role of a Ground Controller directing aircraft to a drop zone at a bush fire”.
The course content is –
•    Role and responsibilities of a ground controller.
•    Aircraft types and capabilities.
•    Aerial suppressants.
•    Ground crew safety.
•    Water bombing terminology.
•    Strategies and tactics.
•    Radio procedures for contacting aircraft.
Prerequisites –to be selected for this course, you should have done –
•    Introduction to Fire Fighting
•     Bushfire Fighting
It is also recommended you have done  –
•    Crew Leader or Sector Commander
•    Advanced Bushfire Fighting
and have been an active member for 2/3 years.

As you can see this is for senior firefighters and as it  is for experienced firefighters, the brigade needs to approve your nomination

Important notes:
Please use the new DFES application form available here.
Alan Yardley
TRAINING COURSES COORDINATOR