North America’s largest fire event, FDIC International, brings together more than 34,000 fire industry professionals this month (April 8-13) at the Indiana Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. First constructed in 1928, FDIC continues today in its original tradition of providing a forum for networking about the most vexing issues and sharing the most promising solutions to concerns that face the fire service.
FDIC provides opportunities to learn new techniques, train alongside world-class leaders, and advance discussions among the most influential firefighters in the industry. FDIC allows practitioners and those who support the industry an opportunity to discuss frankly the latest developments in equipment and support and collaborate on how those new advancements can be best used.
27 Interactive H.O.T Sessions
FDIC offers many opportunities for learning and training, starting with its 27 interactive Hands-on Training (H.O.T) sessions“FDIC is steadfastly dedicated to its fundamental principle of providing a non-ideological, non-affiliated and openly inclusive environment for sharing and collaborating among all members interested in the mission of the fire service,” says Chief Bobby Halton, Editorial Director, Clarion Fire Rescue Group, and Educational Director, FDIC International. “Whether their interests lie in operations, medical or fire, in administration, in the production and distribution of equipment, or the advancement of codes and standards, all opinions and worldviews are accepted and debated with the utmost respect and dignity.”
FDIC offers many opportunities for learning and training, starting with its 27 interactive Hands-on Training (H.O.T) sessions, 78 pre-conference workshops and more than 200 conference sessions. FDIC’s immersive learning experience extends to the exhibit hall floor and outdoor demonstration area where attendees can see and try the latest products, equipment, services and technology from over 800 exhibiting companies.
“FDIC is more important than ever to the fire service industry because it is now and will always be of the firefighters, for the firefighters, and about the firefighters,” says Halton.
Events Co-Located With FDIC
New this year, iWomen is co-locating their event at FDIC, which includes 14 timely classroom sessions spread over two days, as well as networking events geared at sharing challenges and insights in a supportive environment. Also, the Institution of Fire Engineers United States of America Branch is co-locating their AGM annual meeting and educational update at FDIC. And the National Fire Heritage Center has partnered with FDIC to promote the center, conduct its annual meeting and introduce the annual inductees into the Hall of Legends.
FDIC is more important than ever to the fire service industry because it is now and will always be of the firefighters, for the firefighters, and about the firefighters
FDIC’s new MATCH! Program is a customized meeting experience that connects attending decision makers, who have an immediacy to purchase, with exhibitors whose products or services match their sourcing needs and interests. These VIP attendees can make the most efficient use of their time by accessing innovative matchmaking technology and a personal program manager to assist them with meeting scheduling and recommendations.
Exhibitors At The Event
FDIC’s Mobile App is a visitor’s guide to searching the exhibitor list, navigating the exhibit hall and seeing a full schedule of sessions and events. FDIC’s new parking partner, Gate Ten Events and Parking, allows visitors to reserve their parking space ahead of time.
Large exhibitors headlining the Exhibit Hall include Pierce; Rev Fire Group, E-ONE, KME, Ferrara and REV Ambulance; 3M Scott Fire and Safety; and HME Ahrens-Fox. Other large exhibitors include Honeywell First Responder Products, Drager, Globe by MSA, Rosenbauer and Spartan Motors.
Here are some of the timely themes covered at this year’s conference:
- Current updates on the development and implementation of science-based strategy and tactics
- Information and practices on mental health and wellness
- Leading advances in firefighting technology and managing an integration of technology into the decision-making process during operations
- Review of recent sentinel events in the fire service from actual participants
- Analysis of accident investigation from members of NIOSH and the CDC
- Updates on current research into toxicity in the environment and equipment
- Current thoughts on decontamination procedures presented by researchers and practitioners
- The value of belongingness as a tool for health and wellness, suicide prevention, a detailed examination of the sociotechnical interface and firefighting’s role going forward
- The complex political and operational dilemmas faced in the wildland urban interface
- Recruitment and retention for the volunteer fire service
Networking Opportunities Abound
The event takes over the city, and there are chances to network with peers everywhere they turnAt FDIC, networking starts the moment attendees arrive in town. The event takes over the city, and there are chances to network with peers everywhere they turn. Formal networking events are also organized, including the 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb, Courage and Valor 5K Fun Run, Comedy vs. Cancer, IFD Open House and Pumper Pull, Stop Drop Rock ‘n’ Roll and more.
“We want individuals to walk away feeling inspired by new ideas, tools or techniques they’ve learned in sessions or new products or services they’ve sourced on the show floor that ultimately keep them and their communities safe,” says Halton.