Program Overview

3 day IC Certification Simulation Evaluation Session

Once the student has successfully completed the Blue Card online training program, they will be eligible to participate in the evaluation/testing phase of the program.

The evaluation portion of the program incorporates:

  • Standard 8 Functions of Command
  • Regional Standard Operating Procedures
  • Tactical Operations Templates for 5 local occupancy types
  • High fidelity structure fire simulations

The online program uses a wide variety of structure fire simulations throughout each of the 9 modules. The Blue Card program uses 5 distinct building types for size up and incident action planning. These building types include:

The Hazard Zone Management - Incident Command Standard Certification Program requires that each student successfully pass evaluation on both command positions for each of the 5 different building types.

Simulations are typically delivered at a Command Training Center (CTC). Each student must successfully serve as the Incident Commander (IC) in a fast attack position (mobile) and a strategic command position (inside a BC's rig) for each of the 5 building types (a total of 10 times) to become certified.

The simulation evaluation portion of the course merges the Hazard Zone Management - Incident Command Standard with the local; resources, SOP's, tactical hazards, and the standard operational action required for conducting safe and effective locally based operations. The simulation based training provides the students with valuable hands on training and experience for high risk, low frequency events.

Search/rescue, fire control and property conservation are all done a little bit different based on the occupancy type. Search and rescue is going to be managed differently in a vacant building than it will be in a fully occupied apartment complex. One of the foundational elements of the Blue Card system is all tactical action is based on the actual incident conditions (or critical factors). This makes the size up and review and revision process major ongoing IC responsibilities.

Using the same simulations for the sim lab that are also used throughout the online program builds familiarity for the students and leads to much smoother simulations. The ultimate goal of the program is to give the students the necessary tools to safely and effectively manage hazard zone operations. Central to this mission is basing operations on the Blue Card curriculum.

One of the biggest pitfalls of simulation-based training is delivering it in the absence of a curriculum. Attempting to run a command training program without a curriculum turns the program into an opinion-based, Easter egg hunt. No other training tool will expose operational shortcomings better than a well-run simulation lab that is based on a curriculum.

The Blue Card program not only builds the personal skills of each student, it also serves as a means to make improvements to the systems we use to manage the hazard zone (ICS), the local strategy & tactics we employ, and the systems we use to keep firefighters operating safely. On the surface these may appear to be separate systems but in application they all must connect, align and work together simultaneously. Used to its full advantage, the Blue Card program can serve as the system used to help manage the Operations Division.

The Incident Command Certification will be valid for a 3 year period. At the end of the 3 year period, the Certificate holder must have enough continuing Strategic and Tactical training hours to re-certify (36 total Continuing Education (CE) hours) and all of their IC evaluations performed again in their certification time period.