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March 23, 2011
By George Low

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March 23, 2011, Indianapolis - So far, my first trip to FDIC has been phenomenal. The people at The Fire Within, our sponsors for this trip, have been amazing. Thanks to Chad and Jodi for their fantastic work organizing the trip.

Editor’s note: Deputy Chief and Training Officer George Low, an FDIC rookie, blogs from Indianapolis this week.

March 23, 2011, Indianapolis – So far, my first trip to FDIC has been
phenomenal. The people at The Fire Within, our sponsors for this trip,
have been amazing. Thanks to Chad and Jodi for their fantastic work
organizing the trip.

My first day included a couple of seminars on developing and executing a training program. While we already have a pretty good program in place, I gained some useful pointers in improving what we do.

Yesterday, however was exceptional! I participated in a hands-on training seminar on aircraft rescue and fire fighting. Since our little department has been recently tasked with providing rescue service at our local airport, I thought this would be helpful. I was completely unprepared for this high energy, intense eight-hour course. While it involved a lot of work, I learned enough to justify the entire trip! As I write this, I am so sore and tired, I just want to curl up and sleep. But I am so filled with enthusiasm, I can’t wait to get home and share my new knowledge.

I came to Indianapolis expecting to be wowed with the wide array of learning opportunities. I anticipated thoroughly enjoying the trade show, which I have yet to experience. But what really impresses me is the opportunity to meet and get to know, even a little, so many firefighters from all over North America. The brotherhood and camaraderie was expected. What surprised me is that we all share the same issues – whether large or small, career or volunteer – regardless of whether we are Canadian, American, or from any country.

I am eager to see what today brings.

George Low is a deputy chief and chief training officer with Redwood Meadows Emergency Services in Alberta. He has been a firefighter for 31 years and a fire service instructor for 20 years.