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  1. #26
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    Chief Montgomery,

    I believe that this topic should be about training and everyone that has a problem with taking orders from either career or volly officers, needs more! Thats right I said you need more training in taking orders. If this is a problem then your respective training officers needs to set up several inter-department training sessions. Having the officers interacting with each other. The troops will learn to work together easier if they see leadership working together.

  2. #27
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    Where I work as a volunteer, we don't have many career people around us...and don't really want 'em... Just kidding - I can feel the IAFF breathing down my neck!

    Actually, in the few cases where I've worked incidents with the few paid guys that work in some nearby communities, they took orders from the volunteer IC just like everyone else. It's simply a non-issue where I am. You either have the training, or your don't. Just because the township gives you a $300 check each week doesn't necessarily mean you have what it takes to be an IC. And just because you do it for "the love of it", and you'd never take money to do this thing you love so much, doesn't necessarily mean you have what it takes to be an IC.

    It comes down to experience. That trumps everything, all the time. Generally, the people who hold positions of authority, in either paid or volunteer organizations, are there because they have the experience. I'd take orders from either - doesn't matter to me. And it shouldn't matter to anyone if the experience is there.

    It's just that ego thing - and everyone knows we have buckets of it to spare.

    Be safe!
    "Let's roll." - Todd Beamer, one of a group of American soldiers who handed the terrorists their first defeat.

    Joe Black

    The opinions expressed are mine and mine alone (but you can borrow them )and may not reflect those of any organization with which I am associated (but then again, they just may not be thinking clearly).

  3. #28
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    In the military, rank is rank, regardless of full time or part time (reserves) status.

    Requirements should be the same for ranks, with the possible exception of specialty training (EMS, Haz-Mat, Rescue)

    NFPA 1710 should apply everywhere, any exceptions shouldn't be based on vol/career, but on density / population protected. (i.e. low density rural vs. med density suburban va. high density urban)

  4. #29
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    In our outer suburbs of Melbourne in Australia we also have the Vol and Profesional firefighter problems. Out here we respond to the fires in the volly areas, put the fires out and when they finally manage to get a crew on nuffer vollys together we let the do all the cleaning up and we go back to station. i reckon if they want to push water and mop up at grass fires and stuff, they can have it. they never get to actually fight a fire as they are never available. The average volenteer responce time here in melbourne Victoria is between 15 and 40 minutes to get on scene. If it wernt for professional firefighters, haf the city would have been on fire for the last 20 years.

    Cheers

    Rob

  5. #30
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    Dr. Inferno,I hope you're not suggesting from your post that you wouldn't take orders from a non career officer for that reason.If as the CO,I were to call you for mutual aid and you responded and refused to take orders from me because I'm a paid call and you're a full time what do you think the results are gonna be?Especially when I have 30+ years in protecting this district and you have say 10 yrs as career?Do you really think you have a better vision of the problem than I do?Pardon me if I'm dubious.There are excellent officers on both sides of the fence as well as some not so good.For what it's worth I've also served as a career FF.T.C.

  6. #31
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    Boys and Girls, STOP, When we get down to it, the fire is what we are fighting, not each other! Vol/part time or "pro", it (the fire) does not care.

    God Bless America
    and All Firefighters

  7. #32
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    AHMEN!

    Here we (vollies) have the same training as the full time people, only differnce is I work another job and am on call 27/7, 365 days a year, fulltime..10 days a month. yes they may have more runs..but by no means any better than the vollies.

    As far as being in charge...if IC is Full time fine, If IC is a vollie fine...job needs to be done, everyone will have a differnt way of doing things, as long as the job gets done and no one gets killed..then it's all good. be safe

  8. #33
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    Having been both vol/paid call and now paid I have come to realize a couple of things. Any man/woman willing to give up his time for free to do this job has all of my respect in the world. Those departments that have the money are blessed, most are not and have sub-par equipment and they make do w/what they have. I think paid does it better because your job is to be trained and to train constantly, not trying to train after you just worked 8 hours to support a family. Either way, I don't care if the man with the red or white hat gets paid or not. I sit backwards and the only decisions I truly need to make are the ones that ensure me and mine get back on the truck and go home safe after the call, paid or not.

  9. #34
    blackb16
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    dr inferno posted that paid departments have lower fire insurance than volunteer departments. Would you care to post a source for that statement?

    Here is a source that sets virtually all the insurance rates in the US. They say community rating not whether a department is paid or volunteer is what matters.
    Loss per $1000 valuation
    Source: ISO™
    Class Commercial Residential
    1 $0.25 $0.37
    2 $0.30 $0.37
    3 $0.35 $0.42
    4 $0.37 $0.45
    5 $0.38 $0.49
    6 $0.45 $0.55
    7 $0.55 $0.75
    8 $0.60 $0.7 9 $0.68 $0.79
    10 $0.85 $1.10

    The volunteers have for departments and on average better ISO rates. Look no further than Delaware with two total fully career departments. Or compare New Jersey and California. In fact some of the best FD's and lowest insurance rates areheldby volunteer and combination departments.

    What is funny is when the standards for paid and volunteers are the same everyone gets along fine. Take example, California, Nevada. When someone requests 200 strike teams, no one cares if they are paid or volunteer because everyone had to jump through the same hoop to get on the list to be called.

    "volunteer houses spend 400 or 500,000 on a new pumper, and up to 900,000 on a new ladder truck, "

    Gee, FDNY just paid $900,000 for a new ladder and over 400K on engines. YOu don't wantr to know what they paid for the heavy rescues.

    "!!) Volunteers may save in salaries and benefits, but certainly make up for it in overspending on non-needed items!!!!!"

    Well, you certaily didn't make your case above. If communities want volunteers in exchange for good fire services and newer better fire trucks than some of their paid brethren all the power to them. That is what being an American is all about. Choice. The people vote the vollys buy. Gee, just like a paid department.

    "In regards to the "Fireact", if it wasn't for the Fire Unions lobbying for this, the money would not have been reinstated. "

    Reinstated? 5 billion requested and only 100million dolled out. OK the union saved the fire service. And what difference did the FIRE ACT money make? A whopping 53 dollars per firefighter. Everyone got a pair if gloves or something?

    United we grow, divided we stay right here where we've always been.

  10. #35
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    Lovelock: To start off ISO doesn't mean anything where I live in regards to the fire service. I said that "I'm certain that insurance companies have done studies to say that a career department would have saved them money." I didn't quote any one so I'm the source and it is fairly logical. Picture a volunteer department that can't get any more than 1 truck out of the station going to a structure fire you have to admit that the dollar loss is going to be higher than if a career fire department was ready at the station. Hell they could be on the fireground before the first volunteer got to the station so right away the fire could still be in it's incipient stage. Remember fire doubles its size every minute so every minute counts. As for your comparisons with the fire trucks I have no clue as to what you mean besides a fire truck doesn't put out the fire a well trained available firefighter does. As for the fire act being reinstated if the union didn't lobby for it then those volunteer stations wouldn't have gotten anything. By the way it says they may hire 75,000 new career firefighters in the U.S. so get your resume out, because there is no way a proud career man would slam the union like you did in that statement about the union saving the fire service.

  11. #36
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    Greetings,

    Lovelock, apparently, your F.D. like mine did not get a federal grant.

    In reference to the Fire Act, it is very true that the Fire Unions lobbied to get this through. Granted, the amount awared was only 100 million, but it was a start. And that "comment" about this FireAct comes down to every firefighter getting $53.00 to buy a pair of gloves? Childish remark................IF, you look at some of the grants awarded, there were some LARGE amounts going to some F.D.'s, in particular volunteer. Maybe on the next go around our respective F.D.'s will get an award.

    As for ISO........apparently Dr Inferno's comment was very much distorted by you. And also in reference to ISO, I thought that the highest number assigned would be a "9", not a ten. If there are not any hydrants, all F.D.'s start out at a "9". As soon as you place hyrdants in a district, the number drops down to a "6". From there, to obtain a better ISO rating, ALL factors come into play. Especially staffing. But they look at all aspects (i.e. training, hose loads, mutula aid pacts, etc.....) So, if you are going to quote someone, please quote accordingly and have your facts available.

  12. #37
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    As a volunteer chief (an Educator by job) I find it appalling that people are taking sides on this matter. Our paid professionals run mutual with our department and many other departments in the area. As IC I look to them for their knowledge and experience (I have 18 yrs vollie exp.) and use them as another tool at my disposal. As for Volunteer Departments spending too much money, I wish we had that kind of money to spend. Our area must be blessed with Fire Departments that do not want to replicate services, in effect spreading the money we do have, and making our community better. Career firefighters have chosen thier profession just as volunteers have chosen to volunteer and neither group should be made to feel inferior. As far as the fire loss argument that career firefighters have lower insurance loss...show me the study. I would have to believe it to be the same..I could be wrong. God bless all who partake in this honorable endeavor to make our communities safe.

  13. #38
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    Dr. Inferno ... picture a volunteer company that can get an 8 man engine crew and a 6 man truck crew out w/in 4 minutes at night. No, I am not exaggerating. Daytime, 6 man engine crew and 4 man truck crew w/in 4 minutes. Sure beats the 3 man engines and two man engines (that are running as trucks) in the nearby paid world. Is paid better someplaces? Yes. Is volunteer better some places? Absolutely. Deal with it.

    Stay Safe

  14. #39
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    WOW!! What a mess, but I can see both sides of the picture. I'm presently employed in an all career department. I spent 9 years in a combination department(as a paid firefighter) and 3 years volunteering in a DC suburb prior to that. I don't think the mutual aid issue is a problem. You do as you are told as long as you aren't gonna get hurt. The real problem is in a combination dept., the one I worked in as well as the state of Georgia has no real qualifications to be an officer except to be popular! There is nothing more fustrating or dangerous than listening to a MORON that wears a white hat and doesn't have a clue to what really needs to be done. The DC area has some of the most exprienced and qualified volunteers I've ever come in contact with. It all revolves around required training for all officers, career and volunteer. They should be required to meet the same basic standards so that there is no question.

  15. #40
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    PA Volunteer: Good for you and your community. I live in an area that is presently protected by composite(Combination)staffing during the day time. Fortunatly they can provide decent service as well but I can say that the neighbouring municipalities aren't so lucky. Fortunatly the community that pays my wages has been wise enough to implement minimum manning so a 3 man engine is non-existant. But the question posed was Career people taking orders from a volunteer officer and I can't see how it makes sense that a fellow who is a ______ (fill in the blank) by trade has more fire ground knowledge and skill then a fellow who goes to work every day in the fire house. I would imagine that in most businesses of today that it is logical thinking that the full time employee would most likely manage the part time employees. I don't think that is really a hard concept to grasp.

  16. #41
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    Dr. Inferno, if this isn't such a hard concept to grasp, then why can't you grasp jurisdiction? If the volunteers call in the paid guys, then the volunteers have command. If the paid guys call in the volunteers, then the paid guys have command. It's real simple, if you get an order from command, whether it's paid or volunteer command, and it's gonna get you killed, you don't do it. Otherwise, follow command's authority.

    Here's a scenario, what if the volunteer officer in command is also a 30 year paid guy in the neighboring city. Then what do you do? Do you get a resume from who ever is running command before you decide whether or not you will listen to them? There are plenty of volunteers who take the volunteer fire service, and the training that goes along with it, much more seriously than some paid guys who are just doing it for a paycheck. Before I get my head ripped off, the paid guys who are like that are in the minority, but they are there.

    When we go into the city, we listen to the paid guys. When the paid guys come out of the city, they listen to us. It works for them. It works for us. Everyone's happy.

    It ain't rocket science, figure it out.

    Stay Safe

  17. #42
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    The Authority Having Jurisdiction is in charge. The end. If the AHJ happens to be a volunteer organization then so be it, they are in charge unless they give up command. And that works the opposite way too, if a volunteer department assists a career department. All this "well, I'm career so I don't have to listen to a volunteer" and "well, I'm a volunteer so I don't have to listen to a career" is just an asinine mindset.

    I've taken classes filled with both career and volunteer personnel. These classes were taught by both career and volunteer firefighters. Noone said "I'm not going to listen to what he taught because he's a career/volunteer firefighter and I am a volunteer/career firefighter." If group A is good enough to teach group B, then why can't group A take orders from group B on the fireground?

    Bishop: ISO ratings do go up to a 10. "A Class 10 indicates no creditable fire protection is available within 5 miles." ("Your Next ISO Rating"; page 3; updated October 15, 2001)

    The ratings that Lovelock quoted are straight out of the manual that Larry Stevens wrote. (You can find it at www.isoslayer.com, called "Your Next ISO Rating", page 4 has the chart)
    IACOJ Agitator
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  18. #43
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    Dr inferno enough!You show your ignorance in your last post.My chief(god forbid a volly chief at that) knows the same as the career guys in the neighboring depts!If not more than!We train to the IFSTA standards and are you ready for this mr cocky?We can walk in and challenge the Firefighter II test with our training!So before you go off half cocked I suggest you get a grip!We should be working together but God forbid we do that.Grow up and get to know those departments around you.You might be suprised to find out that some of their guys know more than you.

  19. #44
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    Truckie ladder co 147:To begin not in any of my posts do I defame the volunteer fire service. I believe if you read my first post I even mention that I have no problems with the volunteer service and even have friends in volunteer departments. I'm sorry if you find my view offensive but my understanding of the selection of officers can very much be a popularity contest and that in itself seems an accident waiting to happen. As for getting to know the neighbouring departments I do know them and have created working relationships with them, but they are under direction of paid personnel so we do not have this problem. Before my department became full time (24 hour staffing)it was structured that a career man was higher in rank even if a volunteer had more seniority. Before you go off on this it was because the career staff had regular training and drills while the volunteer staff had training if they chose to attend, plus the amount of time they were called in was limited so they could of had 10 years of seniority but only may have attended a handful of incidents to garner any experience anyway. As for my ignorance I'm ignorant as to where there is any ignorance in my last post?

  20. #45

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    Why dont you "VOLLIES" go back to the "VOLLIE" posts so we union brothers can talk smack about ya? No hard feelings but it seems as theres more of you in the paid/ career section than there are of us.

  21. #46
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    EKUK, get used to it. There are more of us everywhere ... and some of us actually know what we're doing. If you want to have an intelligent debate, both sides of the story must be represented. Otherwise, it ain't much of a debate now is it?

    Stay Safe

  22. #47
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    I too have been involved with a career department {Paid Per-diem for five years} and with various volunteer departments for almost 12 years. I can sum this up pretty simply. If the first arriving officer is a volunteer he/she commands the scene until relieved by a higher ranking officer {if any exist} The same applies on the Career Side. Example: If I'm a Volunteer Chief responding in my town that is either served by career personnel to suppliment my volunteers or the first in mutial aid company happens to be all career the command chain is simple ~ I'm in charge..My town my fire...I give the orders ~ Right - wrong - good - bad- or in-diffrent If the Career company can't or doesn't want to follow orders just because I work Full time at the Hardware Store they can pack up and go home. The same applies if I am a Career Captain and a Volunteer Lieutenant shows up and trys to run the scene...Wrong I am the higher ranking officer and that Volunteer Lieutenant can go home. See where I'm going with this ? The highest ranking department official of that particular community is in charge no matter if they're career or volunteer there should be no question or argument to this.
    ***The Opinions expressed here are strictly my own and do not reflect those of the Department to which I am a Member ! ***

    Stratford Fire Co. # 1.."Any Job ~ Any Place ~ Any Time"

    Check us Out www.stratfordfire.com

  23. #48
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    Just to add my thoughts on the matter, I know what I have done to obtain my rank,exams, study, years of service. Yet what are the REQUIREMENTS for a volounteer f/f to attain rank, in Australia it is only to be the most popular with his/her crew. We have Mutual Aid Agreements in place but these dont always work, the same with common sense, it doesnt always get used. some volounteers I have encountered and worked with have a chip on their shoulder and wont recognise my experience and expertise and it doesnt matter what is said they wont listen on principal.
    I feel this has been a problem for a long time and will remain a problem long after I am gone.


    Chris

  24. #49
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    How long will this meaningless debate go on?

    If you go into a community on mutual aid that community owns the incident, period. No mutual aid company can take that jurisdiction away. And only a fool would relinquish command in his own community. After all that home town commander will be held ultimately responsible for what happened at that incident. Now, that is not to say that you won't seek out advice from people with technical expertise, or more experience.

    I am a career firefighter in a medium sized city. We run mutual aid with a few volly FD's here and whoever's community it is it is their incident. Of course our duty chief has the right to withdraw our FF's if something is happening that may place them in harms way unneccessarily. But you know what...we have that same option when we mutual aid with the neighboring paid FD's.

    I am a volunteer fire chief in the community I live in. It is far enough away where my being a volly doesn't have a chance of my FD responding into the city I work in. Believe me, if a fire department came into my community mutual aid and tried to either take over or refuse to follow orders they would be told they are no longer required and that they should leave...immediately. Again I will listen to and seek out advice from those with more expertise than me, but I will not give up my command, because I can't give up my liability.

    Perhaps those of you who don't want to listen to I.C.'s that are vollies should get your communities to drop out of mutual aid agreements and go it alone. Then the issue never would come up. Sounds kind of ridiculous doesn't it?

    Take care and stay safe,

    Fyredup
    Crazy, but that's how it goes
    Millions of people living as foes
    Maybe it's not too late
    To learn how to love, and forget how to hate

  25. #50
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    THERE IS ONE THING THAT THE VOLLIES WILL SIMPLY NEVER UNDERSTAND. FOR PAID FIREFIGHTERS THIS IS OUR JOB. THIS IS HOW WE FEED OUR FAMILIES, KEEP A ROOF OVER OUR HEAD, AND PAY OUR BILLS. IF A VOLUNTEER SCREWS UP AT A EMERGENCY SCENE OR MAKES A TACTITCAL DECISION THAT DOESN'T AGREE WITH THE CHIEF'S WAY OF THINKING, WHAT HAPPENS TO HIM? PROBALBLY NOT ALOT, VOLUNTEER DEPARTMENTS CAN'T AFFORD TO LOSE PEOPLE, SUSPENSIONS OR DISMISALS DON'T HAPPEN. EVEN IF THAY DID GET KICKED OFF, THEY DON'T NEED TO WORRY ABOUT THE HOUSE PAYMENT OR THE GROCERY BILLS GETTING PAID.
    IF A PAID FIREFIGHTER MAKES A MISTAKE HE HAS TO SUFFER THE PUNISHMENT. THAT MAY MEAN SUSPENSION OR GETTING FIRED. THEN THEY MUST WORRY ABOUT HOW TO PAY THE MORTGAGE AND HOW TO FEED THEIR KIDS.
    I DON'T KNOW ANY VOLUNTEERS THAT WOULD STAND BY AND WATCH THEIR PAYING JOBS BE TAKEN OVER BY SOMEONE DOING IT FOR FREE. THE POINT IS THAT WHEN VOLUNTEER FIRE COMPAINES COME ON SCENE AND DO WHATEVER THEY FEEL IS NECESSARY, DESPITE WHAT THE PAID DEPARTMENT HAS ASKED THEM TO DO, THE PAID STAFF MUST SUFFER FOR THE VOLLY MISTAKES.

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