Fire service training centre opens

4 March 2010, 05:02 | Updated: 7 March 2010, 11:29

A new training centre's opened in Oxford to help train firefighters how to deal with things like major fires and explosions.

The £50,000 centre is based at Slade Park Fire Station in East Oxford.  The new unit will use high-tech simulators to give firefighters experience in dealing with major events.

Among the simulations used are a roof fire at Wardington Manor House, a fire at a large cold storage depot near Banbury and an incident around industrial buildings in Banbury involving the M40, a football ground and an oil storage depot.

The new training suite features two main rooms with large interactive boards for presenting video and another three rooms with 46 inch television screens. All rooms have an audio link and are covered by CCTV for training and assessment purposes.

John Parry, Oxfordshire County Council's Chief Fire Officer, said: "The facilities at the new Incident Command Suite are superb. Using real-time simulations of operational incidents allows us to assess and train our officers in a safe, controlled environment. It will improve the effectiveness and command decision making of our incident commanders and will undoubtedly help us to better resolve all types of incidents."

Listen to our interview with Incident Command Officer Matt Morgan