West Virginia University Fire Service Extension (WVUFSE) is working with firefighters, police officers, medical workers and military personnel across the state to make sure theyre ready in the event of a terrorist attack.

Recent national events have forced emergency responders to reevaluate their readiness, and WVUFSE has responded by offering two sets of courses for the states public safety personnel.

The”Emergency Response to Terrorism”series teaches public safety personnel how to recognize when a terrorist attack has happened and how to protect themselves and the public. Topics include basic emergency response, hazardous materials response, recognizing explosives, strategic plan considerations for command officers and emergency medical response to terrorism. The classes are free to first-responder organizations and taught at locations around the state.

The”Domestic Preparedness”series instructs emergency service, public safety and medical personnel how to initiate the correct initial response to a nuclear, biological or chemical attack. The series includes formation for hospital, hazardous materials and operations personnel.

These classed may be offered for a small fee to the first-responder organizations.

Most are two-day courses, which are being offered through a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Fire Academy. WVUFSE will provide instructors, student manuals and course materials. The host organization must have a minimum of 10 students enrolled in a class and a suitable place to hold the classes.

WVU Fire Extension has provided training to the states professional and volunteer firefighters for more than 70 years. Plans are under way to build a new Fire Service Academy near WVU Jacksons Mill in Weston. The new, more modern facility will help West Virginias fire, police and other emergency personnel receive the most advanced training available.

Fore more information on the training courses, contact Roger Johnson at WVU Fire Service Extension, 304-293-2106.