Director Steven T. Edwards is joined by members of the Maryland… (Photo courtesy of Robert…)
A new regional fire training center opened Saturday at its new site in Edgewood, on land donated by the Army.
The North East Regional Training Center, at 9250 Fairview Point Road, is part of the University of Maryland, Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute and one of six regional training centers of MFRI.
More than 200 fire and rescue personnel from throughout Maryland, several members of the Maryland General Assembly and officials from the Army at Aberdeen Proving Ground, joined Steven T. Edwards, director of the Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute (MFRI) for the grand opening ceremony on Saturday. Among those attending were Sen. Barry Glassman, Dels. Kathy Szeliga, Steven J. DeBoy Sr. and James E. Malone Jr. Also in attendance was Clerk of the Court James Reilly; William Dousa, president of the Harford County Volunteer Fire and EMS Association; Dale Lewis, president of the Maryland State Firemen's Association; Army Maj. Gen. Nick Justice and Col. Orlando Ortiz, garrison commander at APG.
The new, state-of-the art emergency services training center will service fire, rescue and EMS personnel from Baltimore City, Baltimore, Harford and Cecil counties as well as Aberdeen Proving Ground. The facility replaces the former North East Regional Training Center that opened in the early 1990s off Route 715 near the main gate of APG.
MFRI, one of the premier fire and emergency services training organizations in the nation, trains approximately 34,000 students each year.
Funding for the new MFRI regional training center, which cost $8.3 million, was provided by the Maryland General Assembly.
One of the highlights of the ceremony was a special presentation and recognition of the late Charles Riley, past president of the Maryland State Firemen's Association and long-time chairman of the Maryland Fire-Rescue Education Training Commission. Mr. Riley's family was on hand to receive a special plaque presented by Gene Worthington, past president of the Maryland State Firemen's Association and member of the Level Volunteer Fire Company commemorating Mr. Riley's lifelong support for continuing education and training of Maryland fire service personnel. The plaque will be displayed by MFRI at the North East Regional Training Center.
The program concluded with a ceremonial ribbon-cutting by Edwards officially proclaiming the opening of the new training center.
At the conclusion of the program, fire, rescue and EMS personnel from Harford and Baltimore counties performed various training exercises for the attendees.