Come Fly with Me

Friendship International Airport was dedicated on June 24th, 1950 by Harry S. Truman. The airport was home to only 8 major carriers and serviced roughly 52 flights a week.

The Airport Fire & Rescue was formed under the authority of the United States Air Force Research and Development Wing in 1958. In the 1960, the Airport Fire and Rescue was under the umbrella of the Baltimore City Fire Department, until its purchase by the State of Maryland in 1972. With that acquisition the airport was officially renamed the Baltimore Washington International Airport (BWI) and then in 1999 the department was renamed the BWI Airport Fire & Rescue Department (BWI-FRD) Station 43.

Today the Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshal Airport, named in honor of the late US Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, who was a Baltimore native, stands in stark contrast to the airport of the 1950. The airport is home to over 36 commercial airlines and averages 688 commercial flights daily.  This makes the BWI-FRD a unique fire department providing a full-scale and wide range of emergency operations services. The department sees many unique fire protection systems and must have a solid working knowledge of these system to successfully interact with them to provide timely and efficient emergency services.


The National Fire Sprinkler Association (NFSA) has worked with the BWI Fire Prevention Division for many years, but this past week marked a new chapter in that partnership with four days of Fire Suppression Division training.

The new NFSA Live Fire Demonstration Unit Training Trainer spent the week with all four shifts training the entire department on fire sprinklers and standpipes. The program consisted of presentations and hands-on in the trailer. The trailer is equipped for live hands on training on wet, dry, and double inter-locking pre-action commercial fire sprinkler systems, with a full nitrogen generator system. A standalone residential 13D fire sprinkler tank and pump systems. A full standpipe riser with all three classes of standpipes with assorted pressure restricting devices (PRD’s) and pressure reducing valve (PRV). Complete with a fully automatic fire alarm with pull stations and smoke detection. All supporting a 7 x 7 burn room equipped with a residential sidewall sprinkler for live fire demonstrations.


We would like to express our gratitude to BWI-FRD for their continued partnership with the fire sprinkler industry and their total commitment to maintaining the highest levels of training. Please join us and the 27 million other passengers traveling annually the next time you fly in or out of Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshal Airport with thanking all of the public safety personnel dedicated to keeping us save on every flight.

Please visit our website for additional training opportunities.