RICHMOND, Va. — Hundreds of firefighters are receiving training from some of the best instructors in fire safety during the Perfecting the Craft 2023 conference in Metro Richmond.
The three-day event was inspired by a firefighter who was killed while on duty 5 years ago this week.
Hanover firefighter Lt. Brad Clark was a founding member of The 350 Line. The group seeks innovative ideas and concepts while honoring the traditions that have brought the fire service to where it is today.
Before Clark was killed while on duty, he dreamed about bringing a firefighting training conference to Central Virginia.
“Brad's passion in the fire service and really in life was training. He wanted to serve our citizens as best he could. He was convinced that the best way to do that is to train firefighters in as many different methods as possible,” said James Munsey, board member and treasurer with The 350 Line.
A lecture series began at The Byrd Theater in Carytown on Thursday and continues Friday.
Hands-on training starts Friday and into Saturday at the Henrico Fire Training Facility and several soon-to-be-demolished homes in Mechanicsville.
Munsey said the firefighters will participate in the "Nozzle Forward" class which is among the most sought after firefighting classes in the world with the instructors based out of Seattle.
The Hanover homes will be the site of a 'truck school' which will involve ladder trucks and crews going through search and rescue evolutions and forcing door evolutions. There will also be ventilation evolutions including cutting holes in the roof of the structures.
“[Brad] would be in love with this because this was his dream. This is what he always wanted,” Munsey explained.
Hundreds of firefighters from Virginia and out of state are attending the conference alongside instructors from Washington state, Washington D.C. and New York City.
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