I agree with you to a certain extent. I believe that any firefighter or fire officer that does not stay current should retire or find another job. I respect and look up to those with 20 years of experience. I treat those with 1 year of experience 20 times over like the rookies/amatures that they are. A professional firefighter is one who has both experience and training and strives to continually update their knowledge, skills, and abilities.
Just to start off, I have been in the fire service for over 30 years. Have NOT accepted Grandfathering during that time. I keep up on all of the latest inovations and will always expect others to do the same.
I have a big problem with "MY SCENE" as I will refer to. The last thing the fire service needs is this kind of thinking. If you are that possive of the fire, maybe you should start you own fire department. If you do that, then you can try to find someone that wants ONLY YOU to put out their house fire.
If you will think about this a little, you might realize that to some of the NEW firefighters coming out of the academies, YOU are old and they might think you have been passed by. Try to remember that we all have something to offer -- as the incident commander -- you need to find the way to use every asset you have.
I hope this has not hurt any feelings but the fire service does not need this kind of problem. I as a strong believer in training, over 700 hours in the last 2 1/2 years alone, and I hope I will have the brains to leave the fire service before it passes me by.
Keep up the good work ---
YOUNG - MIDDLE-AGED -- OLDER
Let strike that from the minutes here.... The topic is training not the confusing of words. What I meen to say in regards to being MY SCENE is: I consider ANY scene that I respond to as MY SCENE. And I would hope in one way or another you would also, as well as anyone.
I am not saying that the scene is exclusivly mine... But I preach safety. And If you, or me, as the firefighter gets in the frame of mind that it is your scene you will be more effective in your own safety, as well as the safety of others.
That being said let it be...please!
I only have one comment. When i started the fire training was'nt required but i tookmit anyway cause my dept didnt have a formal training program. My concern is with the small volunteer dept. They may not have the money to send their people to training and if they dont grandfather their existing members they may lose a majority of their crews what is safer a dept of 20 with 13 people grandfathered or a dept of 7? Dont think that there arent dept out there in this position.
I understand the point you have made. For small departments it's hard to do much of anything, as far as advancing goes. BUT I believe that even "BFE FD" can have the best in training. As a matter of a fact I know that they can. In this example I believe that you are reffering to the lack of management....not the lack of training. In saying this, all States have some sort of Grants and/or Funding specificly for the "BFE FD's" out there. Even the paid full time departments are eligible for this funding.
I hope I can get people to agree with me when I say that:If I were a home and/or property owner im a small rural setting, I would want the assurance that when and if I ever have an emergency. That I would recieve the highest level of fire protection and/or EMS that is available to me. Recieving a person with no training in fireground operations,when my house is on fire is unexceptable. If that were the case I would advance a charged garden hose, and fight the fire myself.
People don't call the fire department to look at the pretty fire engines, they NEED HELP!
Don't take this the wrong way, I meen not to dicourage in any way, shape, or form. Contact your local representitive and see what State funding has to offer, you'll be supprised.
"The few, the proud, the insane"
The only grandfathering I have experience is the problem with the old training programs. The programs are not being taught anymore or they have changed the classes. Now the ones that want to put the fires out must meet a certain amount of training every year. If they maintain that training they are certify to be active firefighters in the state. Just remember that the older ones have put fires out with lesser equipment and less training. They have been putting out a lot more then you have without all the red tape. It is this generation that have made mistakes that have cause all this new regulations. I mean the regulations are most of the time good. But we have to be smart and still put out the fire and rescue people safely. Be safe
Everyone should be subject to formal training if they are serving in a suppression role.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this post are purely mine and not that of the department or any associations of which I am a member. They have their own ridiculous views.
Stay Safe and Stay In the House!
Well this is my 22nd year within the fire service, my dept does have the grandfathering system however for myself I have always kept up with the changing of times.Yes there is a few whom have taken advantage of the system which in essence holds the dept back. There is a lot to be learned from us "ole timers" for those whom are willing to listen. I have nothing againist training, but without the common sense & experience all the training in the world isn't gonna do you any good!
Excuse me for butting in but where did this abomination of an idea come from and why is the term grandfathering miused in this way?
NO one, no where, no how, should be excused from updating their knowledge of evolving firefighting inovations including officers of all ranks and all senior privates.
The term "grandfathering" is used to on paper to change a benefit for new hires without changing benefits for established employees.
I think the term should be changed to "avoidance of duties."
Just my $0.02 !!
Good Luck and be careful out there,EXJAKE:-)
Thanks for the input guys (and gals). I guess this issue should be more of a priority then it is. Hopefully with evolution of the fire service this won't be an issue for much longer... thanks all!
The few, the proud, the INSANE!
Grandfathering has its purpose, on the rural VFD it gives more FF on scene. To my understanding was if they once passed or showed they could do what is needed at a fire scene they would not have to repass or qualify those same things again. I do NOT recall that TRAINING should not be required. Was in a Dept in the early 70's, then not until 98.
There is more to do than carry a charged hose. I'm disabled, so secure the station and operate the Station Radio most times. Many in our Dept are over 55, but they get the fire out, then the pain killers get taken. LIFE & Property SERVICE!!!
If they are still willing to serve, be glad you have them when needed.
I guess I fall into that "old timer" gang as I have been involved in the fire service since 1973. My only comment or suggestion to you is: "Remenber one thing: You may become an old timer too! Some wipper snapper is going to come after you as being the old fart. Be prepaired and hang onto your bunkers for it is coming"
Good luck and be safe
This is my first reply to a forum so please bear with me. At this time my VFD is in the process of attempting to establish some written requirements to be an officer in the dept. and many people have asked if certain people are gonna be allowed to grandfather or not. It is easy for those of us who have already obtained the training needed to reach whatever position we desire to say that grandfathering should not be allowed. But before you close your mind to the idea, there are some serious questions and thoughts that need to be explored. First off let me say that I am a proponent of having training standards for all positions, and do not totally agree with the system of grandfathering,with that said lets continue. The first question to be answered is "what is the issue at hand?". Most of the time it is training, sometimes it may be a collateral or monetary requirement, and depending on the situation such as in the latter grandfathering may be a way of showing respect to the senior members of the company (I will try not to call them old timers)and allowing them to continue to serve the company with pride. However the debate usually occurs during talk about training. I have read where most of the replys in here from senior members use the word "experience", I whole heartedly agree that experience is the best teacher, however, you need to have a firm foundation of instruction or all the experience in the world is no good. In todays world we of the fire service statistically are running less working fires and more EMS/HAZ-MAT/technical rescue, also the higher ranking positions are more administrative and less operational. So you need to ask yourself, shouldn't any member of the fire service be able to perform in any of those three fields proficently along with firefighting.A question to ask yourself is " Can the majority of my Company meet the new requirements, and how much work will it be??. In the early 1990's the state of Maryland established qualification levels, and as a part of that they included grandfathering,they understood that there were members of fire depts. who would never be able to meet the new requirements for whatever reason so for people who had attended certain designated classes prior to a set date, they would be able to qualify at a certain level, however after that point all training had to meet the new requirements. This seemed to work very well. MFRI ensured that the classes included in the grandfathering process met the cirriculum needed to match the new class, so it sometimes took four classes to meet one of the new classes, but they accepted it. Generally as soon as you start to talk about training standards the first thing said by some is "you might as well close the doors because nobody can meet those requirements.". But if you look at the training levels, most of the people usually meet the requirements, or do not need to take may classes to achieve it. Another approach to grandfathering is, yes it may be true that the majority of your members may not be able to meet the qualifications, but why should that prevent you from making sure that future generations of firefighters are properly trained and ready to meet the challenges of the fire service, if you grandfather those who exist but establish new requirements for incoming personnel you can shape the future of the company. The choice to grandfather or not is not an easy one, you must look at your own dept. the needs, and also what the future holds in store. I do not agree with using grandfathering as a way to keep certain people in certain positions, nor do i agree with not grandfathering being used as a tool to oust someone who you do not want in a position. You should do what you feel is in the best interest of YOUR department, it may not always seem like the best choice, you may step on toes and hurt feelings along the way, but in the long run if you do whats best for the department, it will be the right choice.
Training is important no matter who you are! Times have changed, as well as the techniques we employ to make our jobs easier as well as safer. You can learn alot from older guys. As a training officer i find it a challenge to give my younger FF's quality drills. The material you present has to be up to date, you don't have a choice. Sure some guys don't like it. Too bad, we have a job to do. The most important part of that job is to make sure all my men return home to their families.
Well I have to ride the fence on this one, I have seen people with hundreds of hrs of training and could not function safely on any emergency scene, I have also worked with individuals that have the bear minimum and many years of experience that handle themselves as true professionals. I believe there is a need for initial and recurrent training, whether you have hundreds of hrs of training you need experience to hone you skills, there needs to be a happy medium, if you don't want to train it does not matter how much previous training or experience you have time will pass you by and make you the a dinosaur. Remember honest Abraham Lincoln, self educated and self made. so the best I can say is know who your with and cya. Be safe
I have read with much interest the debate about one being "grandfathered".
As a firefighter in his 20th year, I to was grandfathered.
Let me state for the record, just because a person was grandfathered, in most cases, does not make him any less that an individual that has 1001 certification.
The trick is to how an individual applies what he has (knowledge) to the present accepted methods of doing business.
I hold certificates and certifications from
across this great land of ours.
I am certified as an Instructor IV through our state and also hold EMACS and IFSAC certifications.
I remember when we first started using SCBA most of the "older hands" made fun of us because the measure of a "fireman" was how much smoke he could eat. Notice I said fireman not firefighter, even the name has changed.
I am proud to say that some of us old folks,that were grandfathered, stayed in touch with the rest of the world and advanced our knowledge base like the rookies of 1001 training.
For what it is worth, I am the Chief of the Training Division in our city.
We not only have the latest information and technology that is available, we also have some of the best trained firefighters in the world.
One of our lastest recruits graduated top of the class at the state fire academy and another top of the class in smoke divers. We constanly place in the top 5% in the state.
Before one condems the "grandfathered" firefighters, it must be stated, that it is left up to an individual as to the quailty of training and knowledge that one receives from such training that keeps one current.
By the way, this old "grandfathered" firefighter is in the process of enrolling to receive his PhD in Fire Science.
I agree, that not everyone has been fortunate enough or had the intestinal fortitude to progress but I don't think that you will find that as the standard.
Grandfathered and still around, proud to be making a difference!!
[This message has been edited by Spanner (edited April 16, 2000).]
[This message has been edited by Spanner (edited April 16, 2000).]
[This message has been edited by Spanner (edited April 16, 2000).]