Shawnee Fire Department Chief Dru Tischer said nine members of his department have successfully completed the Blue Card Incident Command training program to become certified Blue Card Incident Commanders.

The Incident Command Certification Program is designed to first instruct, train and then evaluate and certify fire department officers who serve in the role of incident commander that supervise and manage emergency and hazard zone operations for every day, local NIMS Type 4 and Type 5 events, (which are 99 percent of the incidents they respond to), Tischer said.

“The Blue Card training program provides fire departments with a training and certification system that defines the best standard command practices for common, local, everyday strategic and tactical emergency operations,” he said. “This training and certification program produces incident commanders who make better decisions that will potentially eliminate the lethal and/or costly mistakes that cause injury, death and unnecessary fire losses in the local response area.”

There are four main components of the Blue Card Training and Certification program:

• Completion of the 40-50 hour online training program (Cognitive portion of the program)

• Completion of the 3-day Simulation Evaluation Session (Manipulative portion of the program)

• Continuing Education (CE) and 3 year re-certification process (Cognitive and Manipulative skill maintenance)

• Instructor training and support program(Local delivery and management of the program)

“This program fits directly into our organizational goal to provide the best service possible to the City of Shawnee and surrounding areas by providing a standardized system for hazard zone operational accountability and communications,” Tischer said. “I can’t tell you how proud I am of these Firefighters and appreciative of the efforts in this program.”

In successfully completing this program, they have shown tremendous dedication to the job and willingness to enhance their professional capabilities, he said.

Tischer said he appreciated Training Chief David Underwood for his work in coordinating and leading this certification class along with Batt. Chiefs Jack Miller, Tom Larman, Tony Wittmann and Fire Marshal David Anderson for their help and support during the class.

The Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security provided a grant that allowed Underwood and the Batt. Chiefs to attend the train-the-trainer portion of this program in Phoenix, Arizona, he said.

In 2017, six of Tischer's department chief officers completed a training program in Yukon to become certified Blue Card Incident Commanders.

In April, eight more Shawnee firefighters wrapped up a three-day simulation evaluation session to become certified in the program.