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Fire Department looks at burn building training facility
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The Hinesville Fire Department is looking to add its own fire training facility in the near future.

City engineer Paul Simonton and Hinesville Fire Chief Robert Kitchings laid out the plans for the live fire training facility, which has been more than three years in the making, Simonton said.

The city obtained the land, more than three acres, off Technology Court, and the fire department’s plans call for a training facility that also can be used by other departments.

“It is a simple concept that is going to push our fire department much further ahead,” Chief Kitchings told council members.

While there are fire training modules in the area, most of the training has to be done at the Georgia Public Safety Training Complex in Forsyth.

“None of them will rival what we’re trying to do here in Hinesville,” he said.

Plans call for a three-story structure of modular units. The first two floors will have various house fire scenarios for fire fighters. The third story will have technical rescue training, including shaft, confined space and rope rescue, Chief Kitchings said.

“The Georgia Fire Academy is very excited about this and they want us to open this up to state certification,” the chief said. “I’ve been saying it for years and this is one more piece of evidence that we are leading the way for fire service in the state of Georgia and this is going to allow us to improve that.” In addition to the burn building, there will be a prefabricated metal building for administration. Instead of one bid for the entire project, including site work and construction, the fire department will handle the bids for the buildings and Simonton will be in charge of the sitework, which includes a driveway and a nine-inch concrete pad for the fire trucks.

Simonton got one bid in for the site work, for $614,000 from Sittle Construction.

“They’ll do all the grading, build the road, sidewalks, do the parking lot, do the pad for the burn building and do the pad for the metal building on site,” he said. “Once that happens, chief and his guys take over and build the vertical.”

Fire fighters will be using the city’s reuse water and a nearby pond will catch the runoff, Simonton added.

Council members are expected to act on the sitework bid at their next meeting.

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