Richardson firefighters began training on a new Emergency Driving Simulator system Tuesday and Wednesday. The $425,000 system simulates a variety of hazardous road conditions for fire and ambulance apparatus, allowing firefighters to be better prepared when they encounter similar conditions.
The system is an enhancement to the emergency driver training currently used and allows firefighters to perform driving training they otherwise would not be able to do in the real world. Simulations can present drivers various scenarios and environments, including driving in residential areas and commercial districts, as well as difficult driving conditions such as icy or rainy weather. It can also be programmed to allow firefighters to train on every type of apparatus used by the Richardson Fire Department.
The simulator, made by Doron Precision Systems Inc., is funded through the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program of the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Department of Homeland Security and matching funds from the City of Richardson. The grant is part of an important component of the larger, coordinated effort to strengthen the nation’s overall level of preparedness and its ability to respond to fire and related hazards.