Citizen Fire Academy

Classroom & Hands-On Learning

Members of the public can learn about firefighting and emergency medical response at a Citizen Fire Academy presented annually by the Washington Township Fire Department.

The free, six-week program includes lectures, demonstrations and hands-on instruction in all aspects of fire department operations. Participants get the chance to dress in firefighter turnout gear, use a fire hose and fire extinguisher, visit the department’s training tower, tour apparatus, receive CPR and first-aid training, and learn how to respond to emergencies in their own home.

The next Citizen Fire Academy starts April 9. To register, call Scott Henry at (937)433-3083.

“So often we see people during a stressful, emotional time of emergency. The academy offers a great opportunity for firefighters and citizens to interact in a fun, safe atmosphere," said Scott Henry, public education specialist for the fire department.

Much of the fun takes place on a visit to the department's three-story training tower where class participants have the opportunity to crawl through a maze that simulates the actual conditions firefighters might encounter in a burning building, including real fire produced by environmentally-friendly gas burners and a non-toxic haze that mimics real smoke. While there's plenty of fun to be had, there's no pressure -- class members are encouraged to participate at whatever level they feel is comfortable for them.

Participants also have the opportunity to learn about how the fire department operates, hear about the history of the fire service, and ask questions of fire staff. “People ask us questions all the time such as why we take a fire engine to an ambulance call. This is one good way for us to answer them,” Henry said.

The Next Citizen Fire Academy Is April 9

The Citizen Fire Academy meets Mondays from 6 to 9 pm for six weeks, starting Monday, April 9. Classes take place at Fire Headquarters, 8320 McEwen Rd., in Washington Township.

The class is free and open to the public but registration is required. For information or to register, contact:
Scott Henry at (937) 433-3083 or


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