Thread: New to Firefighting
12-19-2004, 12:58 PM #1
- Join Date
- Dec 2004
New to Firefighting
Hello everyone. My name is Steve and I just joined as a volunteer at my local fire department. Do to lack of gear I have to wait until mid January before I can actually be put on.
Well I'm very excited and hardly know anything about it. Where is a good place to learn all I can about firefighting? Is there anything special I need to know? I'm looking for just about any information I can. I want to be as prepared and informed as I can before I even get there since I have this time.
12-19-2004, 01:51 PM #2
While there is no substitute for hands on learning, right here at Firehouse is a good place to start! There are a lot of experienced people here, and most all would be more than happy to answer any questions that you may have. You've come to the right place! Merry Christmas, and welcome to the family.
"And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap it if we do not lose heart."
12-19-2004, 02:34 PM #3
Welcome to the fire service. Be careful, and learn, learn , learn!!
12-19-2004, 09:43 PM #4
- Join Date
- Jul 2001
- Not the end of the earth but I can see it from here...
Welcome to the family, Steve! As for where you can go for information, this is a good place to start...lots of good articles, training topics, links, etc., as well as hundreds (thousands?) of experienced firefighters, EMT's, rescue technicians and the like who would be glad to answer your questions.
Some pointers for the new guy....First, be patient about getting your gear, pager, etc. Many departments will hold off giving you your gear until you at least have a little training under your belt. This may be a formal orientation course, or it could just be when they "feel" like you're ready, depending on the department. This gives them the opportunity to 1)make sure you have at least enough knowledge to avoid doing something really dangerous on a scene, possibly jeopardizing your safety as well as the safety of others, and 2)to give them a chance to see if you're really serious about being a firefighter. (since you're here, I assume you are )I've seen quite a few guys walk through our doors who came around for a few weeks and then just sort of disappeared, for whatever reason. The department (ours anyway) would rather not have to go track you down to get their gear back if things don't "work out".
Second, when you do begin to respond to calls, be aware that you may at first be relegated to some mundane tasks on the fireground (fetch tools, help fill air bottles, rack hose, etc.) Firefighting is a dangerous business, with many complex skills that must be MASTERED before you can function safely and effectively on the fireground. Don't be offended if you get stuck with "gofer" duty for a little while. You'll get your chance soon enough.
Next, ask questions. If a skill is being taught or explained to you and there's something you don't understand, make sure you ask and get it clear before you need it. And once you do understand it, practice, practice, practice! 2:00 am with fire blowin' out the windows is not the time to "figure out" how your SCBA works. There will not be time then and you may get yourself or someone else hurt. Remember, amateurs practice till they get it right; professionals practice till they can't get it wrong. (By the way, "professional" does not necessarily mean "paid")
A final note....try to be dedicated without being consumed. Strive for balance in your life. Be the best firefighter you can be, but not at the cost of all else (family, friends, your job or school, etc.) I'm sure almost everyone here knows somebody with the 48" lightbar, 16 strobe lights and a siren on their '86 Toyota, who go around town with 2 pagers, a radio, a scanner and a pair of trauma shears on their belt (referred to here as "wackers"). Sometimes they know their business, sometimes not. In any case they look silly and give us a bad image. They have crossed over from "dedicated" to "ate up with it".
Anyway, enough of my rambling. Congratulations on making that first step. Remember, ask questions and take any opportunity to learn. Happy holidays and keep us posted on how you're doing!Chief Dwayne LeBlanc
Paincourtville Volunteer Fire Department
"I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream — and I hope you don't find this too crazy — is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, 'Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!' That would be bad."
— C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"
12-19-2004, 11:12 PM #5
dmleblanc wrote :
I'm sure almost everyone here knows somebody with the 48" lightbar, 16 strobe lights and a siren on their '86 Toyota, who go around town with 2 pagers, a radio, a scanner and a pair of trauma shears on their belt (referred to here as "wackers"). Sometimes they know their business, sometimes not. In any case they look silly and give us a bad image. They have crossed over from "dedicated" to "ate up with it".
isn't that the truth we all know some of those !!!
good luck be safe and key words are commen sense , education !!
and remember those senior members became seniors there for a reason listen to them even when they bust your hump cause your a probie (aka new guy) cause it's all done for a reason.
12-20-2004, 05:43 AM #6
Anyone thinking what I'm thinking?
PM me if you are.
NJProudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones
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