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Fire Fighting Driving Simulator

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Olivia Gibson
  • 48th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

The 48th Civil Engineer Squadron Fire Department won the 2022 first quarter United States Air Forces in Europe Innovation Transformation Challenge with the implementation of a Fire Fighting Driving Simulator, enhancing the Liberty Wing’s readiness with an alternative way of training.

“This is a great tool to enhance our firefighters’ training,” said Tech. Sgt. Kyle Rose, 48th CES Fire Department assistant chief of operations. “Nothing takes the place of actual hands-on drivers training, but this supplements it greatly with scenarios that aren’t available all the time.”

Introduced to RAF Lakenheath by Tech. Sgt. Alex McCaul, a firefighter formerly assigned to the 48th Civil Engineer Squadron, the simulator supplements training while reducing risk, operational costs and drivers course set up times.

The simulator is an interactive program that replicates controls and various realistic scenarios that would be performed while operating a fire truck. It has helped save roughly $36,000 in maintenance costs due to preventable damage since fiscal year 2020, and reduced the amount of time vehicles are out of service for maintenance, proving it to be a valuable asset to those in the 48th CES.

The system includes 25 scenarios that cannot be replicated by driving on base or on the fire training ground. It has cut vehicle mishaps down 98% while simultaneously saving 122 in-station hours and fuel that can be reserved for real world response support.

The simulator also has the potential to supplement training in other organizations within the Air Force.

“The system could help aid the training of driving other large vehicles like construction equipment used by other CES members,” said Airman 1st Class Thomas Dillon, a firefighter assigned to the 48th CES.

Thanks to McCaul’s innovation, Airmen continue to stay engaged with this unique training, assisting the unit to work more efficiently as a whole and keeping the 48th Fighter Wing ready and equipped to carry out real world operations.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Maximiliano Quintana, 48th Civil Engineer Squadron firefighter, operates the 48th Fighter Wing’s first Fire Fighting Driving Simulator at Royal Air Force Feltwell England, Feb. 11, 2022. The system includes 25 scenarios that cannot be replicated by driving on base or on the fire training ground. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Olivia Gibson)