The overall concept of NIMS is great. The application will never work since noone can remember the stupid acronyms and what to do with them. Unless you run big incidents all the time, annual wildfires, you will most likely never use 98% of what we learned in all those classes. The best part of NIMS is the $100/hr that the instructors are getting paid from the federal government.
100, and 200 were a cakewalk. 700, I printed out to look at. 800??? I printed it out and still am not sure what it said. The 300 test was unlike any test I had taken before. 400, in my opinion, should have been 300, and 300 should have been 400.
I have said from the start, this stuff works great on paper, but when you get beyond a regional incident, things will not go as it does on paper. Search google for live radio feeds from across the country. Listen to them and try to imagine a federal response with the different terms, phrases, and codes in use. It will be the proverbial monkey and the football.
If you take it and put it away to never train or use it again then it was a waste. if you touch base on it here and there and keep up and use the ICS then when you need help on a large scale emergency it is nice to know that the help coming will be on the same page as you or WHEN the big help takes over you don't look like the class act idiots that have no clue on how they are running things.
Even the BIG shots that come in need more training so when big things happen they will be a little faster on getting help set up. I do not believe however that they hold the NIMS training over our heads to be eligible for grant money for the equipment we need to do our jobs. ( that's another issue) but all in all I agree it is dry as toast to take. BE SAFE!!!
I know how you feel. After 300, all I could say was "That's three days of my life I will never get back." I do see where it would come in handy on major incidents. I can go along with the plain english thing. In fact, there are a lot of things that I can see benefit in. I mean, in most of your small rural depts., you would have to go multi-agency to even fill the leadership spots and still have people left to work if you had a major disaster. But, back to your point, does it have to be so dry, boring, and repetitive. I mean come on people.
Not all NIMS instructors get $100 per hour. In SC, the classes are taught as a FEMA hand-off by state fire academy instructors. We get the princely sum of $14 per hour for teaching any class, NIMS included.
I-700, I-800, I-100, and I-200 are available as free online courses from FEMA, nationwide.
There are no instructors for those, so no instructors get paid for them.