Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency is gearing up with a renewed program that will train up to 120 members for extreme rescue conditions

In The Spotlight

Halifax Regional Fire and Emergency is gearing up with a renewed program that will train up to 120 members for extreme rescue conditions.


The HRFE is one of only 6 Canadian teams that will be trained in the HUSAR program, which stands for Heavy Urban Search and Rescue.​ This program will prepare these firefighters to perform rescues in extreme circumstances, such as building collapse, extreme flooding or fires, and other urban disasters that may demand extreme rescues or could result in mass casualty scenarios.

After the main training course, taking place in the US, HRFE will continue constant training here at home.​ This will include specialized gear familiarization and scenario training.​ These teams will then not only be able to respond to local incidents, but will be able to respond to any location in North America within 6 hours notice.​

As firefighters of the HRFE face dangerous and fast changing circumstances, they have all been trained for the task at hand.​

However, within the HRFE, as with many other organizations, there are specialists whose training allows them to take on and endure more perilous situations.​ Some examples include ice rescue teams, high angle and rope rescue teams, confined space teams, and HAZMAT specialists.​

As a result, all HRFE firefighters can get the job done knowing that specialists have their backs, and this also provides peace of mind for the people they protect.​ The HUSAR training will include some known skills but on a much larger scale, and many new skills.​ This represents a great expansion in the already impressive reach of the HRFE not only locally but throughout North America.

Note: This program was once a part of the HRFE and has previously trained in Calgary.​

With a rise in population in HRM and worldwide, a change in the frequency of urban disasters globally, ​ and all the new and updated programs, skills and equipment training available, the HRFE eagerly brought this program back after 10 years.​

Previously trained firefighters from the older program are just as excited as the many new participants.​ We wish those firefighters who are traveling today for all of us to undergo this harsh but incredibly useful training the best of luck!​

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