As the coronavirus dominates news reports, conversations, video chats, and social media threads - most people are reaching their saturation point.
The pandemic took hold in the US, just as much of the country was emerging from winter hibernation – a time typically spent watching TV or staying current on Netflix. With government restrictions, businesses closed, self-isolating the norm, employees toiling remotely, and workers being furloughed – what can people do with all the extra time on their hands?
Fast Company suggested 5 ways to learn new career skills for free during the COVID-19 crisis in a recent article. Their recommendations included attend virtual events, co-work virtually, take a free digital course, watch a webinar, or earn a new certification. NFPA can help with your knowledge building.
In addition to having lots of paid online learning and popular certification programs that may be suitable for professional development, NFPA is providing free access to its energy storage systems (ESS), alternative fuel vehicles and flammable refrigerants distance learning. Responders, code enforcers, facility managers, and those that work in the built environment are encouraged to skill up during this unprecedented down time. This internet training trio is slated to become paid programming effective July 1 so now is the perfect time to take advantage of free access – and build more brainpower.
- Learn About Energy Storage Systems – This 3-hour education module was updated in April 2019 to include more solar content, new technological considerations, and relevant research so that firefighters are keeping pace with the potential fire and life safety hazards that may exist with new energy innovations. The interesting thing is – those that work in facility management, code enforcement, manufacturing, or call themselves designer, contractors or installers have found this online course to be of great value in their roles too.
- Learn about Flammable Refrigerants - More than 200 countries begin ushering in low global warming potential (GWP) refrigerants this year – including the US. This one-hour training shows how the new technology will be used in residential and commercial refrigeration units and air conditioning systems. Find out about flammability and toxicity risks, asphyxiation concerns, jet stream fires, transportation issues, and other life safety considerations. Designed for the fire service, those that work in the HVAC or are AHJs will also find it worthwhile.
- Learn about Alternative Fuel Vehicle Safety – Incidents involving alternative fuel vehicles including electric, hybrid, hydrogen fuel cell, bio-diesel and gaseous fuels such as CNG (Compressed Natural Gas), LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas), LPG (Liquid Propane Gas), and their recharging/refueling stations present unique safety challenges. Start and stop this online module at your desired pace; the course features 3D interactive vehicle models, videos, animations, simulations, review questions, and scenarios to understand the latest automotive technology and corresponding fire tactics.
Prior to the coronavirus, NFPA had agree to host an NFPA 3000 Standard for an Active Shooter/Hostile Event Response (ASHER) Program webinar with the International Association of Public Safety Association to highlight how communities can prepare, respond and recover from hostile events. Many of the takeaways covered during this one-hour session serve as benchmarks for other crises, like the coronavirus.
Just can’t bring yourself to tune out on COVID-19? NFPA has relevant resources designed to keep you informed about important fire, building, and life safety guidance during this pandemic period. Visit www.nfpa.org/coronavirus to learn more.