MCCTC building new fire training facility
Posted on Oct 27, 2018
CANFIELD, Ohio -
The Mahoning County Career and Technical Center is looking to build a new training facility for Valley firefighters- and school officials say it could be a building that keeps giving back.
MCCTC will soon begin accepting bids for design and construction plans for a new firefighter training facility to be built on the school's property.
The center will act as a multi-use facility, with classrooms, a three-story fire tower, a station/garage building for storage of the school's fire engines and student gear.
According to MCCTC Superintendent John Zehentbauer, it's a project that they've been working towards for several years.
MCCTC offers firefighter training classes to high school seniors in the public safety program, as well as adult firefighter training on weekends and evenings.
Zehentbauer says the new center will provide the students with a safer environment to practice putting out fires. Previously, the school used cargo containers to practice fighting flames, however changing standards in state regulations mean that those practices are no longer allowed.
Not only will the facility help train would-be firefighters, but Zehentbauer says it will also help local fire departments as well.
Currently, most Valley fire departments must travel to training facilities in Reynoldsburg or Canton according to Zehentbauer, who said that the State Fire Marshal wrote letters in support of the movement because there is a need for training grounds in Northeast Ohio.
The coordination means that MCCTC will play a vital role in training enough firefighters to fill the ranks of local departments which will then be able to train on specific skill sets at the school.
Between the high school seniors and adult trainees, Zehentbauer says the school trains dozens of new firefighters every year.
The campus will have the ability to offer space for firefighters to train with live burns, search and rescue operations, rappelling, and more.
Zehentbauer says the majority of the $750,000 project is being funded through grants which state lawmakers have been able to help them attain.
However, the school is expecting that they'll still have to pay approximately $100,000 to $200,000 for the building.
But Zehentbauer tells 21 News that he believes that the facility will pay for itself over time.
In addition to new crops of firefighters joining local departments with more training options, Zehentbauer says the community will likely see another impact- an effect on their insurance rates.
According to Zehentbauer nearby residents are likely to see their home insurance rates steady since homeowners are given "points" for living near a training facility.
MCCTC will begin accepting bids for the project on November 15th. Ground is expected to be broken shortly after.
Zehentbauer says they hope to have construction completed and classes underway in April 2019.