BATESVILLE, AR (KAIT) - The White River Firefighter's Association in Independence County is working to complete a new fire training facility for the departments in the county.
Johnathan Abbott is a part-time firefighter and said he cannot express how important their training is.
Abbott said he goes through the same training as full-time staff members.
He said some of the training they receive at these facilities includes search and rescue as well as firefighter rescue.
Currently, Abbott explained they have to send people to Jonesboro or even Camden to receive proper training, which takes manpower away from the department.
He said having a training facility so close will make a difference.
"Here in Batesville, we're the only full-time department, and of course our firefighters have to be on staff here," Abbott said. "So it is actually inside our city limits, and we can actually do the training while on shift."
Abbott explained this could also give the county departments, most of which are volunteer departments, an opportunity to send those volunteers somewhere close instead an hour and a half away.
The project is not complete, and the White River Firefighter's Association is still working to make the facility ready for training.
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