Advanced SCBA Training and Survival Course
When things go wrong inside, have the skills to get you and your crew out alive.
Captain Neal Smith #502
This is the ultimate in a fully packed out survival course. This course takes you to the edge mentally and
physically and then teaches you how to SURVIVE.
Functioning as an interior structural firefighter can present unknown challenges around every corner.  A hazardous environment and potentially
hazardous situations can present a scenario that standards do not encompass. While there are no guarantees, this training course is designed to
take an experienced firefighter and teach him/her practical advanced survival skills in full gear with SCBA. The course is extremely challenging,
intensely physical, and will take the student to his/her limit. Because of the difficulties some may experience,  paramedics are on hand to monitor
students before, during, and after each exercise. "
Smoke Divers" training consists of some classroom, but mostly practical scenarios that will
culminate in a final exercise that requires the use of all skills taught in the course. Within the course curriculum are skill objectives that must be
accomplished by the student in order to graduate. The objectives can not be wavered.
A twenty-hour training program, "Smoke Divers" is taught over a single weekend at the Beaumont Emergency Services Training (BEST),
Complex, a division of Industrial Safety Training Council (ISTC). Course instruction will necessitate full days on both Saturday and Sunday.
Competency in personal protective equipment, SCBA, and fire ground practices are a prerequisite. This is neither a SCBA training course, nor a
search and rescue course. While the course is not designed to fail students, they will not be coddled. Any student thinking this is just another
training course will have difficulty.
All of the skills taught at "Smoke Divers" can be taken back by the students and taught to his/her own department personnel.  While some
exercises may be difficult for a department to duplicate, modified versions can be set-up at little expense. Graduates can share their skills with
other department members and also work to prepare future students for "
Smoke Divers".


Published 02/09/06     Updated 6/10/13

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September 17, 2012 – The East Texas District Board of Directors and the Smoke Diver Instructor Corps have agreed unanimously to place the Texas Smoke Diver Program on hold and
postpone our September, 2013 class, if necessary until the investigation results of the terribly tragic death of Captain Neal Smith can be completed.

With all the improvements made over the years, we were very shocked at the incidences of over-heating related issues.

For a project that uses no live fire, only simulated smoke, no IDLH atmospheres, and enjoyed some very mild weather and humidity – we were surprised by those impacted and what
some internal body temperatures were found to be.

We are already researching many of the new technologies and the latest firefighter rehabilitation studies to better detect, monitor, and treat the body temperatures of those affected.

We have already contacted other state Smoke Diver programs to discover and implement any of the "best practices" that we uncover.

We are currently looking at any and all options that will increase the safety of future Smoke Diver students.

Our hearts are heavy with grief and we regret the unfortunate combination of circumstances that resulted in injury and the death of Captain Neal Smith with the Atascocita Fire &
EMS.
.