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Marine Firefighting for Land Based Personnel, Maritime Hazardous Material Training, and Other Programs for Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey Departments

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Headquartered in New Jersey, the Tri-state Maritime Safety Association (TMSA), combines the Delaware River and Bay Marine Fire Fighting Task Force (MFFTF) & Tri-state Search And Rescue (TriSAR), and promotes partnerships between local responders and the maritime community for regional maritime emergency preparedness within Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. TMSA is the oldest provider of formal land-based marine firefighting training in the United States.

TMSA has been providing National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) based programs since 1994 as the Delaware River and Bay Marine Fire Fighting Task Force. Many of TMSA instructors respond to marine incidents as part of the Maritime Incident Response Team (MIRT). TMSA also involved in all aspects of NFPA's development of the proposed Professional Qualification Standards for Marine Firefighter NFPA 1005 as part of the NFPA Task Force on Marine Firefighting.

Marine fire training programs have been provided for numerous departments in the U.S. for over 5,000 firefighters. Firefighters from 18 states have attended the annual Emergency Response in the Marine Environment Conference. Please note that TMSA has not authorized other groups to provide its training.

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Academic & Training Programs



Marine Firefighter Programs (NFPA 1005)

  • Marine Firefighter 1: This course is designed to provide a land-based Fire Fighter II the first level of progression (as defined in chapter 4, NFPA 1005), the knowledge and skills to respond to an incident and operate in the proximity of a vessel or dock area or to provide support functions in the cold and warm zone on board a vessel.
  • Marine Firefighter 2: This course is designed to provide a land-based Fire Fighter II the second level of progression (as defined in chapter 5, NFPA 1005), the knowledge and skills to respond to an incident and operate on a vessel while performing defensive and offensive functions inside the warm and hot zone on board a vessel. Building upon the Marine Firefighter 1 course, this course provides tactical response guidance for various types of vessel fires, special resource considerations, stability, and post-incident activities.

Marine Firefighter Courses

  • LEVEL I - Marine Firefighter Awareness (4 hours): This is an introduction to the problems associated with marine responses including jurisdiction, operating in the marine environment, terminology, types of ships & facilities, problems unique to marine responses, tactical considerations, safety and incident management.
  • LEVEL II - Marine Firefighter Operations (8 hours): This course takes students into the field to board commercial vessels in the port. It focus on familiarizing students with shipboard organization, suppression systems, detection systems, vessel construction, access and egress, hazardous areas, locations, and cargo. Students are provided a workbook to identify key areas and equipment on the vessel.
  • LEVEL II - (Practical) Marine Firefighter II (4 hours): This course takes students into the field to board commercial vessels in the port. It focus on familiarizing students with shipboard organization, suppression systems, detection systems, vessel construction, access and egress, hazardous areas, locations, and cargo. Students are provided a workbook to identify key areas and equipment on the vessel.
  • Harbor Incident Response Training (HIRT) (16 hours): The maritime HIRT course combines Marine Firefighting Level I and II into an approved OGT training program. It provides additional training on Maritime Domain Awareness. It covers the basic Knowledge and Skill Assessment's (KSA) outlined in NFPA 1005. It is listed under FEMA’s state catalog of approved courses under NY-002-RESP. This is the only Marine Firefighting Course approved for federal funding under FEMA's state approved training.
  • LEVEL III - Marine Firefighter Technician (8 hours): Building upon the Level II - OPERATIONS course, this course provides tactical response guidance for various types of vessel fires, special resource considerations, stability, and post-incident activities.  Detailed tactical techniques for a wide variety of scenarios and involves short classroom tabletop exercises.
  • LEVEL III (Practical) (8 hours): Building upon the Marine Level III Technician, this program provides hands on training utilizing existing identified training facilities to provide practical tactical workstations and drills.
  • LEVEL V - Marine Officer(8 hours): Building upon the previous courses, this course addresses pre-fire planning, ICS/Unified Command interaction, RIT, Command and Control, legal and environmental issues, port resources, communications, post incident activities, and legal concerns. A tabletop exercise is part of this course. This course is designed for senior line officers.
  • Industrial Marine Firefighter: This course is designed to teach fire brigades the skills they need to effectively respond to a vessel fire until the municipal fire department arrives. There are many actions that an effectively trained brigade can do to minimize the impact to their facility and mitigate the incident. These do not require active fire suppression activities, but include exposure protection fire system augmentation, and other similar actions.

Maritime Hazardous Material Training

  • Maritime Hazardous Material Awareness: This course covers a variety of types of hazardous material, where it is found, how to deal with it and how to keep your people safe. A number of hazardous conditions that are found in the marine environment (such has high voltage HF radio antennas) that could place the personnel at risk is also included in the program.

Courses forMarine Law Enforcement

  • LEVEL I - Maritime Domain Awareness for Law Enforcement: This is an introduction to the Marine Environment and addresses basic Awareness, Prevention, Response and Consequence Management issues involved in Maritime Security.
  • LEVEL IA - Maritime Domain Awareness for Airborne Law Enforcement: This is an introduction to the Marine Environment for aviation assets and addresses basic Awareness, Prevention, Response and Consequence Management issues involved in Maritime Security.

Other Training Programs

  • Maritime Search and Rescue (SAR) Courses
  • Urban Flood Response Training
  • Train the Trainer