Oct. 9, 2013 – BASTROP, Texas – Firefighters from across the country will
soon be heading to Camp Swift in Bastrop, just 3 miles from where one of the
state’s most devastating wildfires occurred, to attend one of the nation’s
largest wildfire academies.
The 16th Annual Capital Area Interagency Wildfire
Academy, held from Oct. 11-Oct. 24, is designed for all levels of municipal, rural
volunteer and wildland firefighters.
Rather than having to attend for the duration of the academy,
attendees are able to pick and choose applicable classes ranging from basic to
advanced firefighting and leadership to emergency vehicle and dozer operations.
“It’s as close to a fire assignment as you can get without
actually going to a fire that has the potential to burn houses down,” said Jan
Amen, Academy Public Information Officer. “It is set up just like a wildfire
incident so you know exactly what it’s like.”
The cost is $60 per day and includes breakfast, lunch and
course materials. Volunteer firefighters can be reimbursed for this cost
through the Rural Volunteer Fire Department Assistance Program, a grants program
funded by the state and administered by Texas A&M Forest Service.
“The academy gives our guys the opportunity for hands on
practice and world class training from some of the leaders in firefighting,”
said TFS Wildland Urban Interface Specialist Andy McCrady. “It doesn’t get more
real than this.”
The academy is a joint effort coordinated by Texas Army
National Guard, Texas A&M Forest Service, U.S. Forest Service, National
Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Weather Service, The
Nature Conservancy, National Wildfire Coordinating Group and Texas Wildfire
For more information, go to the Texas Interacency
Coordinating Center training page or contact the academy registrar at AcademyRegistrar@tfs.tamu.edu
Editor’s Note: Media is invited to attend the annual Fallen
Firefighter Memorial Service Tuesday, Oct. 15. If you’re interested in attending the service, please call Academy
Public Information Officer Jan Amen at 936-546-1004. Reservations are
Jan Amen, Academy Public Information Officer
Karen Maxwell, Senior Planner, Travis County