COUNTY’S BURN BUILDING NOW OPEN FOR TRAINING
On Apr. 26, at 4 p.m., Montgomery County is holding a ribbon cutting ceremony for the newly constructed burn building, which is part of the Montgomery County Regional Fire and Rescue Training Center, located at 1636 Merrimac Road.
"This facility is a prime example of perseverance and dedication. This day has been in the making for over a decade," said Montgomery County Board of Supervisors Chair Todd King.
"As a volunteer firefighter myself, I know the value in having a facility locally for our volunteers to receive the training they need in order to do their job," said King.
This new 1,730-square-foot burn building will aid the men and women who desire to become firefighters in providing a place for the mandatory training they need within the first year of their membership, as well as required annual training exercises. Prior to the construction of this facility, volunteer firefighters had to travel to facilities in either Galax, Pulaski County, or Roanoke to complete training. Now, the firefighters can remain local and at the ready to respond to calls should they need to do so during their training.
"Seeing this project through from conception to completion has taken more than 10 years, but it has been extremely rewarding," said Montgomery County Emergency Services Coordinator Neal Turner.
"Having the ability to train our volunteer firefighters locally is both prudent and necessary," said Turner.
The burn building consists of eight rooms, to include three dedicated burn rooms; assembly areas; and several other key features for training firefighters.
In addition to new member training, firefighters from Montgomery County, Giles County, and the Radford Army Ammunition Plant Fire Department are invited to use the structure for annual training exercises.
Montgomery County received a $480,000 grant from the Virginia Department of Fire Programs for the construction of this training facility. The Montgomery County Board of Supervisors allocated $157,000 toward construction, bringing the total cost for the burn building to $637,000.