Training Division

The Training Division is a critical element of Central Fire District. It is the mission of the Training Division to provide the highest quality training, instruction, and evaluation to our members. This is intended to prepare our District to serve our community in the most efficient and effective means possible, and to ensure fire personnel safety. 


The Training Division is responsible for developing and providing comprehensive fire suppression and emergency medical service instruction to all members of the District. This is accomplished with ongoing training of all in-service companies and our paid-call firefighters. The Training Division coordinates training needed to comply with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), International Organization for Standardization (ISO), Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), American National Standards Institute (ANSI), and California Code of Regulations (CCR).

A Battalion Chief, two full-time Training Captains and a Training Admin. serve as the staff for the Training Division. The Training Captains work with other Santa Cruz County Training Officers and their respective fire agencies to help provide a cohesive cooperative training plan.

Recruit Training

All new firefighters must participate in and successfully complete the Santa Cruz County Regional Firefighter Recruit Training Academy.  This academy runs sixteen weeks and meets all California State Fire Marshal and NFPA Standards for Firefighter I certifications.  

Over sixteen weeks, recruits are exposed to EMS and Firefighter training. Recruits will leave the academy with the following certifications: S-190 Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior, Confined Space Rescue Awareness, Firefighter Survival, Low Angle Rope Rescue, Hazardous Materials First Responder Operational and all academic and skill requirements for California, IFSAC and ProBoard Firefighter-1 certification.

The recruit training cadre at the Recruit Academy consists of experienced Training Captains, certified as Instructor 1 and trained in Ethical Leadership in the Classroom. The cadre is managed by one of the participating agency’s Division Chiefs of Training on a rotational basis.

During the Academy, the cadre monitors and trains the recruit classes all the way through to their academy graduation. Upon graduation, the new probationary firefighters will work an eighteen-month probation period during which they must complete fire apparatus driver operator training and become qualified as Driver/Operators of the Districts fire apparatus.  

Completion of the academy and probation is only the beginning, as a fire service career is one of lifelong learning. Firefighters have mandatory training that is required to be completed to maintain knowledge and technical proficiency of their very dynamic career.  Among those includes conducting live fire training under realistic conditions, aerial ladder operations, Urban Search & Rescue training, gas and electrical utility control and much more.

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