I was out of town and missed the first class of the Citizens Firefighter Academy. Great way to start things off. The class had a formal welcome from Fire Chief Scott Thompson with an introduction to fire service history and basic fire science. The primary objective is to educate the local public about the fire department and the services/benefits it provides to the community.
The second class I introduced myself and received a binder with course agenda, ID Badge, and t-shirt. Assistant Chief Carl McMurphy gave a presentation about the fire department organization chart and his role in the fire department. He also indicated that we’d be able to participate in ride-outs with the firefighters. The ride-out would allow us to accompany the fire fighters during emergency calls. This should be fun. He advised some days you get multiple calls and some days the trucks never leave the station. It just depends but you need to be ready. Hoping to schedule a day with some action. There are three fire stations in the Colony and you could choose to your liking. In the future, I’ll have a special post for the ride-out.
We had discussions about local fire issues in The Colony and residential sprinklers. Currently legislation requiring fire sprinklers in new single and multi family residencies is a hot topic throughout the country. There are many benefits to support mandatory requirements for automatic sprinklers in new and multi-family homes however legislation in Texas has struck down the proposal. The homebuilder and realtor industry have deeper pockets with lobbyists opposing legislation.
Chief McMurphy gave a long list of his responsibilities, they include code enforcement, fire inspections, plan review, maintaining apparatus/equipment, background checks, fire hydrant testing, raising funds, emergency management, and more. This may not be representative of all fully paid fire departments but gives you an idea that fire department management keeps very busy.
Stay tuned for next week as we get suited up with full bunker gear and self-contained-breathing-apparatus (SCBA).