21 Recruits Graduate from Roanoke Regional Fire & EMS Academy

Three localities join together to produce the sixteenth regional recruit school 

Roanoke Valley Regional Fire &1The Sixteenth Roanoke Valley Regional Fire & EMS Academy consisting of 21 personnel representing the Cities of Roanoke and Salem, and Roanoke County graduated earlier today at the Roanoke Civic Center, Performing Arts Theatre. Each recruit was called to the stage and pinned with their new firefighter badge as their families looked on.

Ten individuals representing Roanoke Fire-EMS and 11 individuals representing Roanoke County Fire & Rescue spent 18 weeks and over 700 hours receiving instruction and practical training in the areas of basic firefighting skills and emergency medical service (EMS) techniques.

The fire training included: building construction, forcible entry, ventilation, search and rescue, and hazardous material operations; while the EMS training included: basic anatomy and physiology, using a spine board, medical trauma assessments, how to stop bleeding, treating diabetic, cardiac, respiratory, heat and cold emergencies, lifting patients, how to use a variety of medical equipment, and the importance of patient rights.

The academy ended with a live-burn at the Roanoke Valley Regional Fire & EMS Training Center where recruits were able to test their practical skills. Most of the training was completed at the Roanoke Valley Regional Fire & EMS Training Center located on Kessler Mill Road in Roanoke County.

The graduates received their station assignments immediately following the ceremony and some started their first shift the following day.

Bringing the fire and EMS departments together to learn, train, and grow provides consistency among all firefighter/EMS personnel—whether stationed in City of Roanoke, Roanoke County or City of Salem—minimizing costs to each jurisdiction through shared instructors and equipment.

Although there were just City of Roanoke and Roanoke County recruits in this particular academy, instruction was provided by a variety of instructors from all three partnering localities.

The Roanoke Valley Regional Fire & EMS Training Center is a partnership between Roanoke County, the City of Roanoke, the City of Salem, and the Town of Vinton; and is a continuing effort to enhance fire and EMS safety operations and to improve the delivery of these critical services through better training. It creates a system that allows for each area to have access to a state-of-the art facility, as well as the sharing of resources to include specialized instructors and equipment, resulting in greater productivity region-wide.