Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF)


Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) training offered by Fox Valley Technical College is a specialized category of fire fighting involving airport ground emergencies. Training may include: 

  • Airport Firefighter
  • Driver Operator
  • Aircraft Rescue
  • Emergency response
  • Hazard mitigation
  • Evacuation and rescue

Training options range from ARFF certifications and annual refreshers to custom-designed courses. Any scenario encountered on an airfield can be re-created and tailored to produce the most realistic training available. Facility and training prop details can be found below.

The ATW ARFF Training Center is the nation’s premier center for aircraft rescue and fire fighting (ARFF) training located at Fox Valley Technical College’s Public Safety Training Center (PSTC), adjacent to the Appleton International Airport (ATW), in Appleton, Wisconsin.

The world-class training field provides multiple hands-on training scenarios on a one-of-a-kind Boeing 777 Specialized Aircraft Fire Trainer with a broken wing and a Cessna Skyhawk training prop. They are set on a spill-fire area of 96 individually-controlled fire zones, which is the largest in the training industry. The props are designed for realistic emergency aircraft fire and rescue response with multiple scenarios to teach respondents the proper approach and attack techniques.

ARFF Certification courses are accepted by the FAA and meet the training requirements for FAR Part 139.319. The ATW ARFF Training Center is accredited by the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC). Accreditation guarantees the certification programs were reviewed by fire service professionals to meet national and international standards. Prior IFSAC certification is not required to attend classes.

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ATW ARFF Training Center Features

ARFF Vehicle - Striker
Fire Trainer - Boeing 777 Saft
Fire Trainer - Cessna Skyhawk

Building (8,975 sq. ft.):

  • 2 training rooms – one in the office area and one in the garage area
  • Garage with 2 large bay areas
  • Parking with 39 standard stalls and 2 handicap stalls

The Control Room is on the second floor of the ARFF training center. It overlooks the wet deck and B777 SAFT. One large monitor provides a graphical representation of the wet deck burn area, as well as the exterior and interior burn areas of the SAFT. Various fire simulation scenarios and burn zones can be selected and controlled from the monitor with system software, which includes a log-on security system and provides daily readiness checks. The emergency shut-down is also located in the control room. A hand-controlled, manual override system is available for instructors to control the fire systems, as well as the longevity and re-ignition of various fires. The software can also run diagnostic programs to check computer system operation and peripheral equipment. It also provides training reports and logs of: 

  • Trainer activity
  • Each training session (including date and time) 
  • Burn time
  • Agent application time
  • Smoke duration time (if applicable)
  • Crews trained per session



ARFF Striker:

  • 2019 Oshkosh Global Striker
  • High-rise extendable turret with piercing nozzle
  • High-volume, low-attack bumper turret
  • 3000 gallons of water


B777 SAFT internal fires:

  • Cockpit console fire
  • Forward, mid and rear cabin seat fire with flashover capability
  • Forward and mid cabin galley fire
  • Forward lavatory fire
  • Forward and rear overhead bin fire and cargo fire

B777 SAFT external fires:

  • Landing gear fires
  • Wing engine fires 
  • Cargo compartment fires

Drive-on wet deck (19,140 sq. ft.):

  • 96 burn zones (grids)
  • Controlled drainage to detention ponds
  • Infrared cameras for wet deck flame control and monitoring
  • 360 degree access to SAFT

Other B777 features:

  • Piercing panels at various locations and heights 
  • Actual B777 doors
  • Airbus A380 door
  • Broken wing on one side
  • Smoke generation equipment inside 


The Cessna Skyhawk Specialized Aircraft Fire Trainer (SAFT) has four fixed seats in the cabin (two in the front row and two in a back row). The cockpit has a pilot’s control console similar in appearance to the Cessna control console.

Cessna SAFT fire simulations available:

  • Landing Gear Fire
  • Engine/Propeller Fire
  • Cockpit/Cabin Fire

The live fire training system is designed to provide safe and effective training of piston plane fires. The Cessna SAFT includes a piston engine Cessna Skyhawk mock-up with separately controlled fires in the engine, cockpit, and landing gear. All equipment for operation utilizes vapor propane for pilot flames and main flames.

  • The engine fire represents a fire in the engine compartment of the Cessna mockup such as caused by a fuel leak around the engine block. The hood is designed to remain safely in the open position.
  • The landing gear fire provides fire resulting from overheating of brakes and represents burning material in the landing gear. The fire engulfs the wheels. 


ARFF in Pictures

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ATW ARFF Training Center

ATW ARFF Training Center
W6402 Pathfinder Dr.
Appleton, WI 54914
at the 
Public Safety Training Center
W6400 County Road BB
Appleton, WI 54914