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Fire co. gets online training grant

January 11, 2009|By MARLO BARNHART

MAUGANSVILLE -- Maugansville Goodwill Volunteer Fire Co. Chief Phil Ridenour has announced the company received an online training grant, a far cry from the days when grant money just went for new equipment or firetrucks.

The grant - sponsored by TargetSafety and a division of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) - is worth an estimated $10,000, Ridenour said.

Using the funds, Maugansville Fire Co. will provide online training to its more than 60 firefighters at no cost to the community.

"This will lessen traveling to training classes and help our people work around their own busy work schedules," Ridenour said.

With a turnover rate of about five years for fire company members, Ridenour said this training method will be invaluable in keeping members up-to-date on their training requirements.

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"Using this money, we can deliver critical specialized training to our firefighters. This will ensure that they are prepared for every type of situation they encounter while on the job," Ridenour said.

As a participant in the grant program, Maugansville will receive six months of free access to TargetSafety's online training and records-management platform.

The platform includes 15 hours of essential firefighter training for each firefighter, tools for assigning, tracking and recording all online and instructor-led training, and technologies for documenting inspections, policy reviews and other compliance-related tasks.

"This grant is one small way that we can help the men and women of the fire industry who selflessly protect and serve their communities every day," said Kyle Kaechele, TargetSafety's managing director.

Ridenour said his company became aware of the grants while attending a seminar in Florida.

"I think we are the first fire company around here to do this," he said.

Founded in 1999, TargetSafety is a pioneer and leader in the development of online solutions that simplify and standardize risk management. These solutions are used by more than 2,500 public entities nationwide, including fire and emergency medical service departments.

TargetSafety is the only online provider with which the National Fire Protection Association has partnered to deliver online safety training to the fire service. As a result, it leads the industry in the creation of a complete risk-management solution that enables these organizations to maintain compliance, promote safety, reduce losses and assist management with the documentation of all firefighter training.

Ridenour predicted that the online training at Maugansville will begin by the end of this month.

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