Con Fire graduates 27 recruits from academy after ‘crucible’ exercise

ConFire graduates 27 recruits from academy after 'crucible' exercise
Image from the graduation courtesy of ConFire.

The Contra Costa County Fire Protection District (Con Fire) announced Friday it is adding 27 new probationary firefighters to bolster its ranks across the County “that have been challenged by the impacts of the Omicron spike.”

The probationary firefighters are graduates of Fire Recruit Academy 56, where they “underwent a physically and mentally challenging 20-week course of instruction using the latest firefighting and training techniques,” according to Con Fire.

Along with learning basic structure firefighting techniques, the recruits learned wildland fire, rescue, automobile extrication, hazardous materials and other techniques. Right before graduating, they participated in the traditional end-of-academy “crucible” exercise, a realistic 48-hour period designed to replicate what they will soon face in actual shifts.

The exercise included simulated incident responses such as a vehicle accident rescue and structure fires, and concluded with deployment to a training wildfire atop Mt. Diable’s Eagle Peak, which required a six-plus mile hike in full wildland fire gear, according to Con Fire.

During their graduation ceremony, which was at held at Walnut Creek’s Lesher Center for the Arts Wednesday, Fire Chief Lewis T. Broschard III wished the recruits the best for “long and rewarding fire service careers.”

“After completing a rigorous 20-week fire recruit academy training program these firefighters are exceptionally well prepared to step into new roles as probationary
firefighters in fire stations across our very busy District,” Broschard said.