Firefighter training includes simulations of dangerous scenarios — rope rescue, live fire and ice rescue are a few examples.

In order for firefighters to learn how to do their jobs effectively, training must resemble real conditions.


During training, firefighters are exposed to real hazards and there is a potential for injuries or fatalities to occur.

Actions for employers

Employers must:

  • take every precaution reasonable in the circumstances for the protection of firefighters involved in training sessions

Employers should:

  • develop written lesson plans and training safety plans for all training


Consider the following precautions to keep firefighters safe during training:

  • develop a lesson plan for each training session that outlines the learning objectives and how they will be achieved
  • develop a training safety plan for each training session that anticipates what may go wrong, the measures that would be taken and the resources and equipment needed
  • in the training safety plan, identify:
    • circumstances in which training will be stopped
    • how training will be stopped, such as by using a code like no duff, to differentiate between a training scenario and a real emergency
  • ensure all training participants understand the lesson plan and the training safety plan prior to training — consider holding a briefing at the start of the exercise
  • ensure all training participants are aware of the hazards of the training area
  • ensure that all resources and equipment identified in the training safety plan are in place prior to training
  • allow for the graduated acquisition of skills – so that learners are competent in a set of skills before exposure to more difficult tasks and higher hazards
  • teach learners how to identify potential hazards and what to do to mitigate them
  • ensure the trainer is competent to deliver the training
  • consult with the joint health and safety committee or health and safety representative when developing the lesson plan and the training safety plan
  • consider a post-training debrief to review what went well and lessons learned

Applicable regulations and acts



Contact the Ontario Fire College for a copy of a sample training safety plan.