UXO & IED awareness training helps emergency first responders
SafeLane Global visited Green Watch at Redbridge Fire Station to deliver unexploded ordnance (UXO) and improvised explosive device (IED) awareness training.
After the training, Marketing Executive Mary Pipikakis caught up with Green Watch to understand the benefits this training has for emergency first responders.
- What made you connect with SafeLane Global for UXO and IED threat awareness training? UXO and IED training sessions in the Fire and Rescue service are theory based, electronic learning sessions. Although theory is valuable, we approached SafeLane to have someone with vast experience and knowledge attend the station so we could have some further discussion on the threat.
- Have you ever been in a situation where you might have needed this sort of training? As 999 responders, we never know if / when we might be called to an incident involving UXO, an IED, or a suspicious package. Although we might not have experience with these incidents, given the nature of our jobs and the threat landscape, we want to be prepared if we are called to deal with this type of situation.
- What was the most important lesson that came from the training?
How common unexploded ordnance is! It also increased our confidence in recognising suspected UXO / IEDs and the appropriate safety measures to implement.
We know that we must treat any suspected UXO as a real live threat.
- What was your favourite aspect of the training?
The trainer, Nigel Barton, engaged the Green Watch with his highly professional and engaging manner – he really showed his knowledge and his presentation skills were excellent at gaining everyone’s attention.
In addition, the training devices Nigel supplied were amazing – we were given the opportunity to see and touch real, (albeit deactivated) UXO items! These training tools and the Q&A with Nigel improved our understanding of UXO in a dynamic way. You can never have too many shows and tell items
- What benefits have you gained as a result of the training?
The training gave us improved knowledge of the dangers of UXO and IEDs, how common unexploded ordnance is, and the confidence to ID a potential piece of UXO. We also understand the approach needed if we come across an explosive threat.
It was particularly helpful for us to realise how many different types of UXO there are in the UK.
- Do you think other watches would benefit from the training? YES! This training should be rolled out to all Fire & Rescue services. Although online theory training provides flexibility, there are some limitations. Face to face training was really beneficial as we were able to ask questions, understand the rationale behind policies and procedures, and feedback so the training can be further improved. Hands on training makes us less likely to make the wrong choices when faced with UXO or an IED. For emergency first responders, the world is ever changing, our training needs to reflect a wide range of scenarios.
SafeLane Global would like to thank Green Watch from Redbridge Fire Station for requesting this training and for their enthusiasm and engagement.
If you or your team would benefit from improving your understanding of the UXO or IED threat, please contact us today to discuss bespoke continuing professional development (CPD) training.