Group A Workshops will be offered twice on Tuesday and once on Wednesday. Group B Workshops will be offered once on Tuesday and twice on Wednesday.

The Fire Ground Survival Practical Workshop is an all-day Workshop that will be offered once on Tuesday and Once on Wednesday. Space is limited and requires the registrant to bring their own personnel protective equipment (turn-out coat and pants, hood, gloves, boots and helmet).  We will ONLY be able to accommodate 200 registrants on each day.

Each participant can attend three workshops from each group.

EXCEPTION: Registrants selecting the Fire Ground Survival Practical Workshop will attend one from Group A and two from Group B or two from Group A and one from Group B depending on which day they are assigned to attend the Fire Ground Survival Practical Workshop.


The need for a North American Fire Ground Survival Program is clearly evident. Fire fighter fatality data compiled by the United States Fire Administration (USFA) indicates fire fighters “becoming trapped and disoriented represent the largest portion of structural fire ground fatalities”. This program will train fire fighters to perform potentially life-saving actions if they become lost, disoriented, injured, low on air, or trapped. The practical training evolutions presented in this workshop include:

• Disentanglement – learn and practice the latest techniques to avoid becoming entangled and the skills to free yourself should you become entangled
• Low Profile – learn and practice the latest techniques for maneuvering through narrow opening including breached walls
• Upper-floor Egress – learn and practice the latest techniques to escape from upper floors with the minimum equipment

Registrants are required to bring their own personnel protective equipment (turn-out coat and pants, hood, gloves, boots and helmet).

The nature of the activities you may perform while involved in the Fire Ground Survival Practical Workshop requires mental judgment and a high degree of physical fitness, agility, and dexterity, and that this may include strenuous exercise in varying environmental conditions, which requires physical fitness, strength, and stamina and involves the risk of injury or death. The International Fire Fighters Association (IAFF) will not provide medical or health insurance coverage to anyone during any aspect of this workshop. ALL participants MUST sign a waiver prior to participation in this workshop.

Tuesday/Wednesday: Group A Workshops (Offered twice on Tuesday and once on Wednesday)

   A-1. The Fire Service Joint Labor Management Wellness-Fitness Initiative (WFI) Implementation  

The WFI addresses the needs of the total individual in a program to build and maintain fit uniformed personnel. Fitness—physical, mental, and emotional—requires an effective wellness program available to recruits, incumbents, and retirees. This program offers a step-by-step approach to implementing the Joint Labor-Management Wellness-Fitness Initiative. Any fire department can use this process to evaluate a current wellness-fitness program or to design and implement a new program that meets the criteria identified in this Initiative. While various elements and methods of a wellness-fitness program may vary from department to department, the program development process will be similar. To assist in this process, sample strategies and worksheets have been included to assist you with implementation of the WFI in your organization.

   A-2. Behavioral Wellness:  Mental Aspects of Performance  

Traditionally in the Fire Service, medical and physical fitness have been prioritized above emotional or behavioral wellness. However, it is clear from the aftermath of 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, and other disasters that these priorities are now changing. Research shows that fire fighters who balance physical, behavioral and emotional wellness have the best outcomes, whether one is looking at adjustment to becoming a fire fighter, ratings of career satisfaction, family well-being, or adjustment to retirement. This workshop will focus on the latest EAP coping and support system mechanisms and how your department can overcome the avoidance and stigma when it comes to one of our own taking their own life.

   A-3. Economics of Fire Fighter Wellness 

The current economic crisis increases the chance that administrators will look to cut Wellness-Fitness programs. Administrators are calling for more rigorous use of economic evaluations to guide resource allocation and spending. A number of studies have shown that a well designed and implemented program provides a favorable Return on Investment (ROI). This program will highlight the cost justification of the WFI and discuss the seven year Promoting Healthy Lifestyles: Alternative Models’ Effects (PHLAME) study health findings and new data on the 10 year study on 600 fire fighters. This workshop will also discuss the necessary cost-effective approach to wellness in today’s difficult financial situation. 

   A-4. Infectious Disease:  How to Protect Yourself  

Learn basic information about common infectious diseases that can affect your health and safety and your family members including the symptoms, prevention and transmission methods and treatment options for specific diseases. Understand the tools needed for fire and EMS departments to prepare for a pandemic flu event.

   A-5. Fire Fighter Environment: Detection and Dangers of Toxins in Today's Fires  

Today’s fires are hotter and more dangerous than ever due to the plastics and building materials that are fueling them. Learn about the detection and toxic nature of these products of combustion and how to protect yourself from them.

   A-6. Building Codes:  Making Buildings Safer for Fire Fighters and Residents  

Realizing the fire station is your staging area, your work environments are the buildings you respond to during an emergency or fire incident. Learn how this work environment is created and maintained through building and fire codes and what can you do to create a safer work environment for you and your members. Find out what is new in this field and how you can have a positive impact on the creation and maintenance of a safer work place through the building and fire codes process.


Tuesday/Wednesday: Group B Workshops: (Offered once on Tuesday and twice on Wednesday)

   B-1. Fire Service Communications:  Why They Are Not Working    

The flow of information between fire fighters and fire officers is imperative to fireground safety. An effective communications system requires proper planning at the front end in order to prevent problems later, and there is no one better to participate in the process than fire fighters who must understand and be involved in the process of developing a new radio communication system in their jurisdiction.  Discussions will address funding, staffing, training,  testing, trouble-shooting and implementation of such systems to standards and requirements for fire fighters so they can respond safely and effectively.

   B-2. Fire Fighter Safety, Resource Deployment and Staffing 
Many fire departments across the nation are being challenged by budget crises, rising call volume, personnel and equipment shortages, security issues and the overall expectation to do more with less. These and other factors, all too often, have our responding crews encountering increasing line of duty risk of injury and death as they continue to work to reduce civilian injury and property loss. The DHS funded study on Firefighter Safety and Resource Deployment seeks to establish a technical basis for risk evaluation and deployment of resources and staffing by local fire departments allowing them to more appropriately match resources to the risk environment to which firefighters respond, thereby reducing fire fighter injury and death.  Data will be presented to support 4, 5 and 6-person staffing.

   B-3. Functional Fitness  

Injuries cost the fire service billions of dollars annually. In this workshop instructors will discuss movement based programming that matches the demand of the job. Learn about the various tools to determine potential problem areas, prevent injuries, increase functional training and increase performance efficiency.

   B-4. Operating Safely: Protective Clothing and Equipment Technology    

An examination of current issues surrounding fire fighter's personal protective clothing and equipment, including new research, product demonstrations and purchasing strategies to obtain the best gear for your members.

   B-5. Cardiovascular Disease   

It’s no secret that heart disease continues as the number-one cause of fire fighter fatalities. This workshop will discuss the screening of fire fighters for early detection, treatment and prevention, as well as addressing novel risk factors relating to cardiovascular disease and the relationship between these risk factors and cardiovascular events. (PFT CEUs) 

   B-6. Injury Prevention    

Statistics show that fire fighting is one of the most dangerous occupations in the world and low back injuries and other sprains and strains account for over 50% of total injuries. New evaluations and techniques have emerged in recent years that may help reduce both the severity and frequency seen in these fire service injuries. This workshop will discuss ways to reduce work place injuries by identifying potential problems and ways to correct the imbalance by using Functional Movement Screening (FMS) with a few strength and endurance tests. This proactive injury prevention approach is paramount to try to reduce injuries in the fire service and improve personnel resistance to injuries.

*Schedule is subject to change due to speaker availability and scheduling conflict.

Attention Certified Peer Fitness Trainers:
IAFF/IAFC/ACE certified PFTs are eligible to earn CEUs for attending the Redmond Symposium. There are also workshops that PFTs can take to earn additional CEUs. Contact the IAFF for more information.