In order to best comply with training requirements, the Region of Tuscany built “La Pineta di Tocchi”, a training regional centre, which was inaugurated in April 2007 and that is used to inform and theoretically and practically train the staff that – at different levels - deals with activities of prevention and fighting of forest fires.
In this structure, for much of the year a number of courses are carried out, with the aim of enhancing operational activities, of training and safety of the whole fire fighting staff, belonging to public administration as well as associations performing voluntary work.
Currently, 18 different courses are carried out in turn, all of them dealing with forest fire fighting, among which courses meant for basic operators, courses on safety under forest fire fighting conditions, courses on driving all-terrain fire fighting vehicles, as well as courses designed for team leaders, lookouts, staff in charge of operations rooms at the regional and provincial levels, forest engineers, directors in charge of fire fighting operations, staff dealing with fire-related activities, and for designers of prescribed burning workplaces. In the future, also other typologies of courses are going to be performed, which are taking into consideration all training requirements of the staff dealing with forest fire prediction, prevention and fight.
The centre features three classrooms, one of which (with about one hundred seats) can accommodate about thirty people in comfortable bedrooms, and cater for over 80 people. Moreover, it is equipped with facilities meant for recreational activities in the evening.
This structure can host also conferences and refresher courses, besides being organised in such a way that different courses can be carried out at the same time.
Parking available for vehicles and equipment, wide open areas and woods, a pond, an helicopter landing refuelling area, as well as a route (about 1 km long) featuring different obstacles and difficulties designed for safe driving of all-terrain light and heavy vehicles – all that makes it possible to carry out fire fighting practical exercises within the structure itself, by means of all types of equipment, vehicles and helicopters used in fire fighting activities in our region.