COLLEGE STATION – Nearly 40 Texas Legislators and staff members were in College Station Wednesday, along with staff members serving U.S. Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn and U.S. Rep. Chet Edwards, to learn more about the training that Texas firefighters receive to better protect citizens and property.
The visit corresponds with the 81st Annual Municipal Fire Training School, which is hosted by the Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) at the Brayton Fire Training Field in conjunction with the State Firemen’s and Fire Marshals’ Association of Texas (SFFMA). The Legislative Day event was coordinated by the SFFMA.
The Legislative Day included presentations by SFFMA President Bryan Rickert and Executive Director Chris Barron; Texas Fire School Chief Les Bunte and TEEX Director Gary Sera; and Tom Boggus, Director of the Texas Forest Service, which provides tuition assistance for Texas Rural Volunteer Fire Departments through House Bill 2604.
The group toured Brayton Fire Training Field and watched live-fire training and rescue operations performed by some of the nearly 2,000 municipal firefighters participating this year in the Municipal Fire Training School. These firefighters are trained by TEEX with the assistance of more than 500 guest instructors and safety officers who volunteer their time because of their dedication to the fire service.
The visiting dignitaries then had the opportunity to don bunker gear and participate first-hand in a live-fire training exercise to gain a better appreciation for challenges the state’s firefighters face, and why training is so important.