Blair Muldoon (2nd from left) gives (r-l) Mimi Pelletier

Looking to give back? The fire department needs volunteers

The Revelstoke fire department is recruiting volunteers to join the department.

Blair Muldoon’s goal is to become a full-time firefighter. A five-year veteran of the Revelstoke fire department, the journeyman electrician has volunteered his time to the department while seeking out full-time employment.

Earlier this month, he was leading tours during an open house of the fire department as part of a drive to boost the number of volunteers with the department.

“Because the numbers have gone down we’re trying to get more groups in,” he told one  group of four prospective volunteers.

Over the past year the number of volunteer firefighters has decreased to 32 from 24. While it has generally been a quiet year for the fire department, the decline puts pressure on the remaining members. As a result, the fire department is looking to recruit 10 new members to help swell the ranks.

Several dozen people showed up to take a look. The tours were given by experienced volunteers while others underwent training. One group of volunteers was in the midst of driver training; the trucks’ engines sometimes drowning out the voices of the tour guides. Another group of volunteers was in the firefighters’ lounge, receiving training by video.

I joined Muldoon while he spoke to four potential recruits: Mimi Pelletier, Daniel Diederichs, Byron Wilkey and Ron Campbell. They all gave different reason for wanting to join, ranging from a desire to give back to the community, to acquiring new skills and using it as a launching pad to becoming a career firefighter.

“Maybe harden up a little bit,” added Wilkey. “Our generation is a little soft in the gut.”

Muldoon told them the role of a volunteer, from assisting on first responder calls to battling raging fires. If they choose, they can also join the Revelstoke Highway Rescue Society and assist on highway accidents.

Volunteers receive training in all areas. As a first responder, you can achieve your level three certification. You also learn all aspects of battling a fire, how to drive the trucks and more.

“You get a good mix of people here,” Muldoon said. “Whatever your background is, you can apply it to skills in the fire hall.”

There are certain expectations to meet as a volunteer. For one, you have to attend 60 per cent of all training sessions. For another, you’re expected to go out on 50 per cent of all calls that come through.

Training is every Wednesday from 7:30-9 p.m., “Even if it means skipping wing night,” fire chief Rob Girard told prospective recruits.

The fire department is looking to recruit eight volunteers right now but will be recruiting new groups once or twice a year to ensure there is always a steady influx of people.

“When you join this organization, you’re automatically getting 41 new friends,” said Girard.

To join, recruits must fill out an application form and undergo a basic medical checkup from their doctor. The application asks questions about ones community work, physical condition, pastimes and other experiences and skills. The deadline to apply is October 31 and interviews and practical evaluations will follow from there.

 

Just Posted

Photos: Railway Days at Revelstoke Railway Museum 2019

Today was Railway Days at the Revelstoke Railway Museum. There was food,… Continue reading

City launched Tech Strategy 2.0

Revelstoke received $100,000 in funding to build on its Technology Strategy project

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Summerland cannabis shop receives approval in principle

Inspection now required before Green Gaia may sell cannabis

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

‘I’m just absolutely disgusted’: Husband furious after B.C. Mountie’s killer gets day parole

Kenneth Fenton was sentenced to prison after he fatally struck Const. Sarah Beckett’s cruiser

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Good morning bats! Salmon Arm office receives surprise visit by winged critters

Pair of bats found huddled together on wall in the sun outside downtown office

Most Read