What Does A Fire Department Do, Besides Put Out Fires?
By Alice Henry
March 9, 2016 8:27am CST
Recently, there was a situation where a firetruck transported a sick child to the hospital, which probably saved her life. But, the firemen who were on the truck were dismissed from their jobs because they were not authorized to transport anyone in the truck, even though it was a DIRE situation and no other means of transportation was available. I’m still following the story on the news and I think the men have been reinstated, but I was unaware that a firetruck was not equipped with the proper means to transport a patient. So, I looked into it, here locally. I was able to learn quite a few things that I didn’t know. In our area, a Fire Station, usually acts as an Emergency Communications Center, which is responsible for coordinating all 911 (Emergency) calls for police, fire and EMS and handles after-hours calls for other City departments. This center also maintains a computer link with the Virginia State Police and handles all court related files. The Fire Marshal’s Office works closely with the Building Official’s Office and conducts construction review. In addition to that the Fire Marshal is responsible for all fire, arson and explosive investigations, hazardous material response, and chemical threats to the public and/or the environment and the inspection of City buildings for life safety and fire protection. The Technical Rescue Team are trained to safely, efficiently and effectively perform rescues in the event of emergencies that need specialized response, including swift water rescue, confined space rescue, trench/evacuation rescue and building collapse rescue, among others. The Emergency Management Department oversees the City’s role in man-made or natural disasters and ensures City departments are prepared PRIOR to an emergency. Fire departments, in this area, also participate with churches, civic groups, and businesses to provide fire prevention, injury prevention and disaster response training and each year, during the Fire Safety Month, Fire and EMS personnel visit elementary schools and day care facilities to provide fire safety education. Many fire departments in this area provide FREE smoke detectors to those who cannot afford them, free home safety inspections, (which include changing the batteries in smoke detectors) child safety seat checks, fire station tours, public safety education programs and CERT training. These are just a few of the many services of the Fire Department. Wherever you live, if you have a nearby Fire Department that serves your neighborhood, you should go by there and personally THANK each fireman for their service to your community and you should also make regular donations to your Fire Department, especially if it’s a Volunteer Fire Department. They are ALWAYS in need of funds. Researching this has helped me to have a better appreciation for the fire departments in my area and I’m going to make an effort to thank all of the firemen personally.
4 people like this
• United States
9 Mar 16
Love it, thank you. I hope whoever got those firefighters dismissed will be fired themselves, hopefully there is a law suit pending. In my city firefighters do what you mentioned but also act as EMTs and arrive at dire medical situations before the ambulance crew, perfotming CPR or oxygen or other necessary basic medical treatment. They are definitely busy with that. Firefighters are heroes!!
2 people like this
• United States
9 Mar 16
Yes, the firemen here are also trained to perform emergency measures for injured persons, but they are NOT allowed to transport anyone, according to what I have learned so far. Mainly, because the trucks are not EQUIPPED to transport a person safely. Only EMT vehicles are equipped for transporting.