Magazine posts category: Consultation


Markus Vogt hands over training consulting to Clemens Pessel

Clemens Pessel is the new central contact for fire services outside Switzerland at the International Fire Academy. Since summer 2023, he has been working closely with his predecessor, Markus Vogt, to prepare to take over the role of training consultant for German and English-speaking fire services. Since 1 January 2024, he now bears the main responsibility. In the interview, both explain how the preparations for this handover occurred.


Seattle Fire Department tests Swiss Tunnel Firefighting Procedure

The Seattle Fire Department is currently creating its own tunnel operations procedure to address a variety of road, rail and metro tunnels and the challenges they present to responders. Operational planners had already informed themselves at the International Fire Academy in 2016. At the end of 2022, 14 North American fire service colleagues came to Balsthal to gain practical experience with our operational procedures and get ideas for their further development work. In the process, the Swiss…


How we guide fire services on their way to their tunnel training

A fire in a railway or road tunnel can endanger many people within a short time. How many firefighters are needed for such an incident depends on many factors. Therefore, there is no across-the-board answer to the question: How much training does a fire service need for tunnel operations? Instead, a development process is necessary. Our guide shows the most important steps on the «pathway to your training», which fire services can also use for their meetings with the financing body.

TunnelTrainingConsultationKnowledgeAbout usBackstageServices

Interschutz 2022: Expertise in tunnels and underground car parks in international demand

Postponed twice - then the Interschutz finally got underway again. We were able to build on our attendance in 2015 and reached our target audience in Hannover again this year: Fire service supervisors, builders of tunnel facilities and other contacts for preparing for operations in underground transport systems.

Fire attack in a training tunnel with two burning lorries
TunnelTrainingConsultationInfrastructureReferenceAbout usBackstage

From the major fire in the Gotthard Road Tunnel in 2001 to deployment confidence in tunnel fires

After the major fires in road tunnels in 1999, the prevailing opinion was that fire services could do little about tunnel fires. Today, most fire services consider themselves well equipped for this task. Urs Kummer, CEO of the International Fire Academy, and Christian Brauner, head of the Didactics and Development Team, trace the development since 2001.


For long rescue routes: Fire escape hoods with compressed air supply

When rescuing people from smoke hazards, fire services use fire escape hoods as standard. Respiratory devices with filters protect the persons to be rescued from toxic fire gases by filtering them out. However, if the air breathed in through the filter contains too little oxygen, there is a risk of severe health damage after only a short time. This article explains why fire escape hoods with compressed air should be used for long rescue routes, which can supply the persons to be rescued with…


Search stick 3.0

The basis for the development of the search stick was the so-called long canes for visually impaired people. The search sticks are a further development of this product and have been optimised for fire service operations. The International Fire Academy is now launching the third version of its search stick. The new model is expected to be available for delivery from August 2021. The article explains the innovations and gives important advice for use.


Include fire services in the planning of new tunnels at an early stage

For each tunnel, both location-specific and facility-specific preparation for operations is required, which must be developed together with the carrier and, if necessary, the builder of the tunnel. The earlier this is started, the greater the chance of creating good working conditions for the fire services, improving safety and avoiding unnecessary costs.


When fire services get a tunnel - the case study of the Scheibengipfeltunnel Reutlingen

Within a very short time, the Fire Service Reutlingen had to prepare itself to provide rescue services for the construction phase of Scheibengipfel Tunnel in Reutlingen. The International Fire Academy supported the fire service by giving its officers the opportunity to quickly familiarise themselves with the special conditions of underground transport systems and practically test their tactics and techniques under operational conditions.