1. #1
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    May 2005

    Default The Ideal Newbie?

    I know it's an oxymoron, but I'm just starting on the job and, being in my early 50's, want to fit in and be productive as quickly as possible. So far my primay directive is "stay out of the way" and help when I can. Any other tips?

  2. #2
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    MemphisE34a's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Memphis, TN - USA


    Well I would say the opposite. I would guess that the "stay out of the way" comment is referring to activities on an emergency scene, but most of firefighters time is spent in the house, not out on calls. Stay out of the way should not apply there. Be the first to initiate chores. Keep the house, equipment, and apparatus clean - even if others won't help. Hopefully they will. When your not taking care of business, study. Learn your territory, learn your equipment, learn your sops, dispatching guidelines, the job of the driver, the job of your officer, etc.

    When I was first hired and taken under someone's wing I was told my job was to make my officer look good - no matter what. When you do that, you will look good too.

    Step up in the house and you should soon find yourself in the trenches with you co-workers.

    I put the new guy on the nob right away unless he is a complete POS.
    Last edited by MemphisE34a; 05-06-2005 at 08:50 PM.
    cell #901-494-9437

    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.

    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber
    prymtym's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Ann Arbor, MI

    Thumbs up

    To add to the above good advice, go find something on one of the engines or trucks that you aren't very familiar with. Ask what it is, what it does, how to use it, how to start it, whatever. Better to find out in the firehouse than on scene. If you know where it is and how to use it, they might not want you to "stay out of the way" as much.
    When you get back to the firehouse and the others start B.S.ing about the call you just went on, start washing the rig. Don't wait for anyone to ask, just start doing it. Like Memphis said, who cares if nobody helps. When others see you're willingness to work, they will help eventually. Some won't help no matter what, but that's the breaks when your new!
    You'll do fine,
    "PHILIPPEANS 4:13"

  4. #4
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    Join Date
    Mar 2005


    yeh, "Answer the Phone Probie"
    lol- just j/k

    umm good luck

  5. #5
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    FWDbuff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003


    A good Proby is the last one to bed at night, after emptying the trash, straightening up the kitchen, and preparing the coffee pot for the morning. A good Proby is the first one out of the rack in the morning, making the coffee and straightening up the kitchen.....Going over the rig, making sure it is clean and presentable (doesnt have to be spotless....) Cooking breakfast on weekends.....

    A good Proby studies his manuals....Listens to his officers, prepares and anticipates for the unknowns.....A good Proby FEARS THE SENIOR MAN MORE THAN HIS OFFICER.......A good proby asks questions, does not boast or tell stories, nor play practical jokes on the others in the crew. A good Proby respects tradition, attends all out-of-house company functions when invited- picnics, dances, retirements, weddings....A good Proby shows up for all Department functions such as medal days, parades, etc.....

    A good Proby always shows up at LEAST an hour early for his shift, and cracks the books......A good Proby sits extra watches for the senior guys until he learns his box assignments.....A good Proby buys and cooks his 6-month or 1-year meal (NOT CHEAP, EITHER!) for the guys at the appropriate time......

    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

  6. #6
    Forum Member
    Dave1983's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Gator Country


    One with two ears and no mouth
    Fire Marshal/Safety Officer


    "No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government"
    RUSH-Tom Sawyer

    Success is when skill meets opportunity
    Failure is when fantasy meets reality

  7. #7
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Feb 2005


    After reading all the statements about what a probie is it seems that they are more of a slave & a servant than anything else.

    We treat our probies as humans & fire fighters who don't know much but are learning. They are not forced to make the coffee, scrub the toilets or other menial chores keeping the senior firefighters happy.

    I've found the best way to help the probies learn is to put them right up front in the thick of things & give them the responsibility and authority to act & learn. Of course they have somebody backing them up who's "proven" and has the skills and ability to stop things from going south when (not if) the probie makes a mistake.

    Everybody learns differently but as a rule the probie should be seen & not heard, studying and learning (hands on training in the station with the gear on the trucks) and not making coffee of scrubbing the bathroom.

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