OSFC COVID-19 Updates and Resources
This page was last updated on 8/4/2020.
Status of Our Office
The Pennsylvania Office of the State Fire Commissioner (OSFC) and the State Fire Academy (SFA) facilities are closed. No on-site classes are being held. Our staff is currently working remotely to handle administrative duties.
Guidance for Conventions and Other Large Format Events
As we move into the parade and convention season, we must remain diligent in efforts to maintain the safety of participants, vendors, staff and the public we serve. Large events and gatherings must take into consideration the current pandemic environment.
Recognizing that the severity of the pandemic is constantly changing, the Office of State Fire Commissioner is currently recommending these events be postponed if/when possible. If a decision is made to move forward with a scheduled event, events are prohibited from having more than 25 individuals if indoors and more than 250 individuals if outdoors.
We encourage event organizers to consult resources available through the Commonwealth of PA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This fillable assessment tool (PDF) from CDC may also be useful to you.
Grant and Loan Programs
The COVID-19 Fire, Rescue, and EMS Grant registration deadline has been extended to August 14, 2020, at 4:00 PM.
OSFC is working diligently to ensure our grant and loan programs functions normally. We are currently transmitting grant agreements.
Impacts are currently limited to the loan program. We are actively working on a solution to continue preparing loan applications for approval for companies that submitted loan applications prior to the office closing.
For information regarding emergency funding for fire departments during the COVID-19 outbreak, our office is currently encouraging departments to contact the U.S. Small Business Administration.
Incident reports are still being imported and sent to NFIRS. Reporting information is being updated and is available on OSFC’s website. You can access the most recent Incident Count Report (PDF).
Staff is available to answer questions or help with incident reporting. Please email OSFC's Christine Williams or Kraig Herman.
Training Guidance for Fire Departments
We encourage fire departments to continue training as needed/possible while following Governor Wolf’s and the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s directives on group size and social distancing. Many fire departments have begun delivering training via various online platforms such as Zoom or Skype.
Guidance from Commissioner Trego and Administrator Cook is available here (PDF).
Local Educational Training Agencies (ETA) are making case-by-case decisions on whether to hold classes as directed by their agency leadership. Local ETAs have been encouraged to deliver live virtual lectures on their agency’s platforms. Contact your local ETA for more information.
Events, Trainings, and Workshops Updates
2020 PA Weekend
The National Fire Academy has canceled on campus programs through mid-May 2020. To assist in planning efforts, we are announcing that PA Weekend 2020 is now CANCELED.
The PA State Fire Academy will begin returning checks to individuals and organizations that have already submitted them to us. We appreciate the interest and all the support the PA fire service has shown PA Weekend, and we look forward to returning to the National Fire Academy in 2021.
In lieu of the on-campus weekend, the State Fire Academy is planning to offer regional training utilizing National Fire Academy instructors on a regional basis later in 2020, when face-to-face training and education can safely be resumed.
Details will be provided at a later date. If you have any questions about PA Weekend, please contact PA Weekend Coordinator Terri Brooks.
State Fire Academy Local Level Instructor Workshop
The PA State Fire Academy Local Level Instructor Professional Development Workshop scheduled for May 30-31, 2020, has been canceled. Please contact Mark Wineland with questions.
Online Training Opportunities
Hazardous Materials Awareness
Hazardous Materials Awareness (PA-PSFA-Hazardous Materials Awareness; course number 1076417) can be completed online via TRAIN PA. Students will need an active TRAIN PA account or will need to create one.
Traffic Incident Management
Traffic Incident Management (PA-TIM Traffic Incident Management Training; course number 1082546) can be completed online via TRAIN PA. Students will need an active TRAIN PA account or will need to create one.
Required NIMS Training
Required National Incident Management System Training can be completed online via the National Fire Academy.
ICS-100 and ICS-700
As part of the Entry Level Fire Fighter curriculum, students are required to complete ICS-100 and ICS-700. Students will need a FEMA SID.
State Fire Academy Training and Certification Opportunities
We continue development of innovative methods to provide training and certification during COVID-19 response, and SFA is expediting the roll-out of the following in an online format:
- Introduction to the Emergency Services (Module 1)
- Fire Ground Support (Module 2)
- Hazardous Materials Operations – both initial and refresher classes
Certification staff is working to approve new test banks and review all processes for validity and adjust as needed. For more information, see the latest Fire Service Certification Newsletter (April 2020) (PDF).
COVID-19 Resources for the Fire Service