How to become a firefighter via Training Development Group

Class Fire Training Photo

We wanted to take this opportunity to hopefully answer most of your questions regarding the process of becoming a Texas Commission on Fire Protection and IFSAC certified firefighter through Training Development Group (TDG). Obtaining your IFSAC seals allow you to transfer your certifications outside of Texas. The exact process will depend on your local regulations. It is a process than can seem a bit intimidating when you first start researching it, but we are here to assist you through it.

CLASSROOM
So, the Texas Commission on Fire Protection (TCFP) requires that a student spend a minimum of 12 weeks in Basic Structure Fire Protection or NFPA 1001 for our Canadian brothers and sisters. This includes Firefighter I, Firefighter II, Haz-Mat Awareness and Haz-Mat Ops. The program is a total of 468 hours. Here at TDG, the classroom portion of BSF/NFPA 1001 is completed online. You can sign up at anytime and you will be immediately granted access to the online classroom where you can start your work right away. You have a maximum of 8 months to complete the online portion and 2 months to complete your 14-day boot-camp for a total of 10 months. It is certainly possible and not at all uncommon for students to finish the online portion in 10 weeks. STUDY HAZ-MAT!

Our boot-camps are scheduled throughout the year. Once, you have decided which boot-camp you are going to attend and the date is nearing, you will first have to complete 10 online tests. These tests will be scheduled on specific days and open for 24 hours. You must complete and pass each of these tests to be eligible to attend boot-camp.

BOOT-CAMP
Through communication with us, you will secure your spot in one of our boot-camps. Nearing boot-camp, you will make travel arrangements. This may look different depending on where you will be traveling from but if you are flying, we will arrange to pick you up at DFW Airport on a specific date and time. We will then transport you to Joshua, Texas where the academy is located. Within the first week of boot-camp, you will take a class final. This test is a must pass to continue with the program. For the next 14 days, you will live in a fire station type environment in which food will be provided but you will work as a crew to cook meals, clean, workout, etc. simulating actual station life. A typical day will look like this. Wake up, workout, tidy bunk room and station, get ready for class, get on the shuttle & head to class, spend 2-3 hours in classroom reviewing, go do hands-on, clean up, head back to quarters, make dinner, clean up, study, go to bed, repeat. There will be days that are different, but this is the basic structure. On the last day of your 14-day boot-camp, you will take your TCFP state exam. STUDY HAZ-MAT! By now you have seen this a couple times, the reason I have repeated it is because the state test is broken down into 4 sub-sections, FFI, FFII, Haz-Mat Awareness & Haz-Mat Ops. You MUST pass each subsection with minimum grade of 70 to be eligible for certification and Haz-Mat is the most troublesome for students. If you fail a sub-section, you will have to retest that sub-section only. This has the potential to be extremely inconvenient for out-of-staters if you must travel back to Texas to retake a portion of, or multiple portions of the test.

AFTER BOOT-CAMP
Congratulations, you have passed your test. You are now eligible for certification. To get your IFSAC seals is an easy process but it does have a few steps. Each seal is $15. As you can see below, you begin with the Haz-Mat Awareness seal and progress from there. This is because each subsequent seal has a prerequisite.

FFI also has a medical training requirement. The following are the approved training courses for Canadian students.

Canadian Red Cross- CPR-C
Canadian Red Cross-CPR-C HCP
Canadian Red Cross- Emergency First Responder
Canadian Red Cross- Emergency Medical Assistance
Work Safe BC- CPR-C
Work Safe BC- CPR-C HCP
Work Safe BC- Emergency First Responder
Work Safe BC- Emergency Medical Assistance
Alberta College of Paramedics- EMT
Alberta College of Paramedics- First Responder
Southern Manitoba Academy for Response Training-EMR
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada-BLS for HCP (C)
British Columbia Ministry of Health- EMT
British Columbia Ministry of Health- First Responder
St. John Ambulance -Workplace Standard First Aid with CPR C & AED

INSTRUCTORS
Our instructors are top-notch. Men and women with extensive on the job experience that are passionate, self-motivated and always pushing themselves to be on the leading edge of fire service techniques.

CONCLUSION
Our goal here at TDG is to put out the very best product possible and you are the product. The best thing we can do for our fire service and for you as a future firefighter, is to prepare you as much as possible for a long, safe and fruitful career. This is in the best interest of the citizens that you will serve, the firefighters you work with throughout your career, your family at home and yourself. We hope to see you in a boot-camp soon.