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Fire Instructor I

  • September 26-29, 2024

class information

IFSTA “Fire & Emergency Services Instructor”

Pre-course Assignments

Equivalency to M-410, Facilitative Instructor

Download the Fire Instructor I flyer (98 kb) and Firecamp Application (170 kb) in PDF format.

Poinciana, Florida Live-Fire Training Deaths — July, 2002

Lt. John Mickel and Dallas Begg Act

NIOSH Report, 2002-34

Florida State Fire Marshal Report

Preventing Deaths and Injuries to Fire Fighters during Live-Fire Training in Acquired Structures, CDC Workplace Solutions — November, 2004

Poinciana Video

Links to Instructor Resources

Colorado Fire Training Officers Association

Colorado Division of Fire Prevention & Control

Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute Drill of the Month Weekly Fire Drills

Division of State Fire Marshal
Bureau of Fire & Arson Investigations

SFM CASE NUMBER: 26-02-3753


On Tuesday, July 30, 2002, at 10:45 hours, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) Orlando Communications Center contacted my supervisor, Law Enforcement Lieutenant Charles LaCorte, informing him that two firefighters in Osceola County had been seriously injured in a fire and were being transported to the hospital. Lieutenant LaCorte contacted me to start responding to Osceola County and he would notify me with further details after he made contact with Osceola County Fire & Rescue Division (OCFRD). Lieutenant LaCorte received further information from OCFRD Deputy Fire Marshal, Captain Al Cialella, that two OCFRD firefighters had been transported to the hospital from injuries suffered at a live-burn training exercise that was being conducted that morning on the property of the former Florida Bible College (FBC), located at 1701 South Poinciana Boulevard, Kissimmee, Florida.

I continued my response and contacted Captain Cialella by cell phone. Captain Cialella had arrived on the scene along with Osceola County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) deputies who secured the area with a “Police/Fire Line” barrier tape and initiated a contamination list. Captain Cialella advised me that both firefighters had died from their injuries. I told Captain Cialella to insure scene preservation and not allow witnesses to leave prior to my arrival. I updated Lieutenant LaCorte, who was in route to the scene at that time. Lieutenant LaCorte and I arrived at the scene at 12:30 hours on the same date and met with Captain Cialella, along with OCSO Criminal Investigations Division (CID) Sergeant Jeffrey Barnes and Detective Kerwin King. OCSO Technical Services Division, Crime Scene Technicians (CST) Candice King, Mark Gill, Lisa Bowen and Brianne Trupper were also on the scene.

It was decided that the State Fire Marshal (SFM) Bureau of Fire & Arson Investigations (BFAI) would be the lead law enforcement agency in the investigation because of the expertise needed in the examination of the fire scene, however, the primary goal in the investigation was to determine all of the circumstances that led to the deaths of two firefighters that were participating in a fire department training fire. It was agreed that the SFM investigators would team up with the OCSO detectives to conduct a joint investigation of all circumstances of the two deaths and to rule-out any violations to the Florida Statutes including FSS Chapter 782 Homicide. At that time investigation tasks were assigned. I was designated the lead investigator who would work with OCSO detectives on witness interviews and the follow-up investigation. Lieutenant LaCorte was assigned the scene investigation assisted by Captain Cialella. The Crime Scene Technicians would assist in photographing, documentation and evidence collection.

The scene was processed which included a general survey of the scene; close examination of the area of fire origin; and documentation with 35mm photographs and 8mm video recording. A rough sketch was also made of the scene. Captain Cialella secured a digital still camera and an 8mm digital video camera from a witness who was photographing the training exercise at the time of the incident.

Initial interviews of the participants of the live fire training exercise, who were members of the Osceola Fire & Rescue Division (OCFRD) and the Orlando Fire Department (OFD) were conducted at OCFRD Station 21 in a non-custodial setting. Written witness statements were also obtained during the initial interviews. The participants and the witnesses were also informed that they would be contacted later for follow-up interviews.

A compact disk (CD) containing digital image files (still photographs) captured with the digital camera and the video recording tape of video footage from the 8mm digital video camera was obtained and a property receipt was signed by the witness who was photographing during the training exercise. The digital camera and 8mm digital video camera that had been secured by Captain Cialella was returned to the witness.

When the initial witness interviews and the scene investigation were completed, the investigation team met at OCSO West 192 Substation to exchange information and to plan the following investigative tasks. At the end of the meeting it was decided that Detective King and I would conduct the follow-up investigation that would consist of the tasks that included, a review of the information and evidence acquired from the fire scene investigation; review of the information obtained from the initial interviews of participants and witnesses of the training exercise; meet with the Medical Examiner’s Office (pathologists & investigators), witness the post-mortem examination and obtain preliminary pathology findings; submit samples of victims tissue and clothing to SFM Laboratory for analysis to determine the presence of flammable materials and obtain analysis results; obtain recordings of OCFRD radio transmissions that were made during the training exercise to be enhanced for clarity; and conduct follow-up interviews of participants and witnesses of the training exercise. SFM Major J. Ron McCardle also assisted in obtaining more detailed measurements from the fire scene for analysis, which are reflected in the diagrams he produced and in his Supplement Report #3.

SFM and OCSO continued an active joint follow-up investigation until August 9, 2002, when OCSO ended their involvement with the investigation (See OCSO Case #02I053877). I continued with the remaining task of the investigation involving the follow-up interviews of the participants and witnesses of the training exercise. I was assisted by SFM Investigator Greg Kunkle during the follow-up interviews (See Inv. Kunkle’s Report Supplement #4).

Abstract of Lt. LaCorte’s Supplement Report #2

The incident occurred in unincorporated (Poinciana) area of south Osceola County, Florida. The scene is located within the former Florida Bible College campus situated on the southwest corner of the intersection of Poinciana Boulevard and U.S. Route 17-92 (OCPA Parcel ID# 25-26-28-6180-000H-0010). There are several buildings on the property that were scheduled for demolition that had been contracted by OCFRD to be used for fire training exercises. This incident involved a 1,462 square foot single-story ordinary concrete block construction, vacant residential/single-family dwelling.

A more detailed description of the fire scene and structure are given in Lieutenant LaCorte’s scene description and fire scene investigation (Supplement Report #2) and Major McCardle’s report on the exterior and interior dimensions of the structure (Supplement Report #3).

Abstract of Lt. LaCorte’s Supplement Report #2

Fire tracking of burn patterns and depth of char indicated that the area of origin was the closet in the northeast bedroom of the structure. Evidence found in the scene examination determined that materials consisting of wooden pallets, hay and a foam mattress were used to fuel a fire in a fire training exercise. Close examination of the room of origin displayed evidence that a flashover occurred during the exercise. Evidence was documented with photographs and collected from the scene.

A more detailed description of the “Fire Scene Investigation” is found in Lieutenant LaCorte’s Supplement Report #2.

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