The use of digital training systems is a new way to train firefighters. It is a safe, clean, and cost-effective alternative to traditional gas-based training. The digital system is a computer-controlled system that uses flame-generation patterns based on training data to create a realistic fire-training environment. The system is designed to be used in various training scenarios, including branch techniques, flashover and procedure training.
Digital training proposes several benefits over traditional gas-based training. First, the system is computer-controlled using patterns from natural fire behaviour. Second, the system is safe and clean, reducing health risks and environmental hazards. Finally, the system is cost-effective because it doesn’t need expensive fuel sources like propane gas.
This new type of training system is available in various sizes and configurations. Nowadays, the elaboration of fire and safety training is closer to a ‘magical’ groundbreaking algorithm than the traditional ‘create and plan’ processes we use. Power and fuel supply like electricity or gas are becoming a heavier part of the budget of training centres (public or private) if it isn’t already the most significant part.
Facts and figures to keep in mind:
- A fire point consumes up to 4.3kg of propane gas in 10 minutes
- A rollover is 1.5kg of propane gas each time it is turned on
So, we can calculate that a minimum of 10 minutes of fire training using 1 gas simulator piles up to a gas usage of 5.8kg.
At the end of September 2022, the gas prices are around Ä1.65 per kg. Thus a 10-minute fire training using 1 gas simulator costs nowadays Ä9.57.
To this extent, a training session of 12 people with minimal training set-up (only one simulator being used) will have a price tag of Ä57.42.
On the other side, we also know that repetition creates ‘muscle memory’, which is key to a successful training outcome. You must train as often as possible and within a realistic environment, focused on realism, safe use and cost-effectiveness.
So how can you balance regular training and control your operation cost?
Digital fire-training equipment to keep continuous training
Repetition is one of the most critical parts of good training. Digital training simulators are supplied with electricity, facilitating regular exercise without bearing unforeseen costs due to fluctuating gas pricing. Those training simulators also lower the exposure time of the trainees and instructors to dangerous situations or environments with digital systems. Not all trainees are fire professionals with adequate protection (PPE, SCBA) that need to get used to intense flame and heat. Another great advantage is that the training can occur where the fire hazard is. For example, exercises can happen in the trainee’s building, site or area. Think of the kitchen for a hospital where the most significant risk is. You can also train during summertime when water restrictions and high temperatures forbid you from using water, gas or wood.
Realism is key
With the first generation of digital training equipment, it wasn’t possible to train with a high level of realism. After implementing user feedback and advice, the new generation of digital products allows you to get familiar with all firefighting techniques within all environments, such as offices, real-life airplanes and engine rooms. You can use water or adapted laser-driven portable extinguishers and nozzles. You can also use your own equipment. No virtual reality or simulation, virtual prop, making you seasick or nauseous, only actual and singular products. You can take the training to the next level, anywhere, anytime.
After several years on the market, digital fire training products are reaching a new level of realism. They can perfectly replicate the responding fire behaviour on used firefighting techniques in most well-known/standard fire classes. You can now add smoke and heating elements. Enhance your training scenario and create a combined simulation with the right amount of cold smoke behaving like real smoke.
Are you ready for next-generation training?
For more information, go to www.lionchimerx.com/training-unit/dft-training-unit