Wiregrass Public Safety Center to revolutionize local first-responder training

Local News

DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — Dothan’s police and fire departments will soon have a new place to train.

The Wiregrass Public Safety Center’s “resources will provide law enforcement officers, firefighters and EMTs an unmatched ability to prepare for the rising complexity of today’s emergency situations,” according to the center’s website.

“This will open up a whole lot more opportunities for different types of training,” said Randy Morris, general services director for the city of Dothan. “It’ll keep them from having to go out of town to train on different types of props. People will be coming to Dothan to train instead of us having to go somewhere else.”

According to Dothan police Chief Steve Parrish, this will also help smaller departments get high-quality training at a low cost.

“Most of these smaller agencies can’t afford to have the training, can’t afford to send someone out of town for a two-week interview and interrogation class,” Police Chief Steve Parrish said. “Why don’t we host that here and invite our partners in our region who are less fortunate then we are and train everybody?”

In addition, both departments hope a strong commitment to the community will amplify their impact through instruction and training opportunities for volunteer responders and other residents.

“We do a lot of community outreach stuff now in our city working closely with our school system right now with a lot of different initiative that’s going on,” Fire Chief Larry Williams said. “All that will culminate right here with us just being able to do some awesome community-based work.”

They hope to have construction finished and start moving in by Oct. 1 and opening for business by the month.

The total project cost is $22,000,000 with the city contributing $1,870,000 over a 10-year period, and the Wiregrass Foundation has committed to funding the balance.

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