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Local firefighters head to Israel for terrorism response training

Posted at 7:58 AM, Sep 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-16 11:01:44-04
The skills they'll be learning are ones they never hope to use. For the first time, firefighters from Arizona are heading to Israel for terrorism and bomb response training. Our firefighters are heading to Israel Saturday through the Emergency Volunteer Project to learn how to respond to mass casualty incidents in case an emergency ever happens in Southern Arizona.
Two firefighters from Nogales, one from Mount Lemmon, one from Rio Rico, and one firefighter from right here in Tucson will take off for a nine day trip to work in Jerusalem and Gaza alongside fire crews there.
They will go out with crews responding to all calls learning how they tackle fires and how they triage victims in a terror attack. TFD Captain Bruce Avram said our fire crews have never had a chance to get this kind of training from such experienced fellow firefighters.
"The call was made, and we want to go and we want to help," Avram said. "In return, we are going to learn some skills they are unfortunately really good at, which is terrorism and how to respond to multi-casualty incidents. And we will bring that knowledge back to share with our community."
With this training, the firefighters from Arizona will be ready to return to Israel in case their crews ever need international help.
This program has trained nearly a thousand firefighters and medical professionals from America and Israel how to respond to these situations.
This is the first year since the program was founded in 2006 that a group is going from Arizona. One of the firefighters from Nogales will be the first female American firefighter to ever participate in the training.
If you'd like to volunteer overseas with the Emergency Volunteer Program, click HERE.