Around 8:00 AM all personnel will begin to check out each fire apparatus (engine, ladder truck, rescue truck, brush truck, etc.) and piece of equipment to ensure that it is fully operational. Emergency Medical Technicians and Paramedics will also check out all of the specialized medical equipment and verify that all medications are accounted for. Each fire house is led by a company officer. In addition to participating in and leading training and calls, this captain spends quite a bit of time in his or her office logging personnel and equipment on the computer, verifying training and inspection schedules and performing other administrative duties.
9:00 am Firefighters must maintain a certain level of physical fitness and we attempt to set aside time each day for physical training. Physical fitness is so important to a firefighter’s job; we have to complete two fitness tests every year. You may see your local fire crew working out in their assigned districts at parks or local fitness clubs. Workout time is occasionally interrupted by calls and/or necessary training but it is an important part of our job and every attempt is made to provide the opportunity.
11:00 am This remaining hour in the morning can be filled in many ways. Typically the engine company must go shopping for meals. Firefighters each chip in $6.00 per meal for their 48 hour shift. There are also generally miscellaneous errands that must be taken care of (Fuel and equipment for the engines, pick up supplies, etc.) Additionally, training or inspections may be scheduled in the morning if time allows. Just as with any part of our day, emergency calls can come in at any time. That’s why you see an engine company and three firefighters doing these tasks. If there is an emergency, they drop whatever they are doing and respond to the call.
12:00 pm Lunch
1:00 pm The afternoon hours provide us with the largest block of time for training, business inspections, public education, and special programs.
- Training events may include firefighting techniques, medical knowledge and skills, hazardous materials or specialized rescue training.
- Business inspections are provided by the engine companies with each company generally responsible for 100 or more inspections a year.
- Your firefighters travel to schools and businesses providing public fire education. Every year many schools send their students to their local fire house for a tour and fire safety talk.
- Virtually every firefighter in the department is involved in a special program which requires additional hours for management. Sometimes time is allotted in the afternoon for these programs.
- Maintenance of the apparatus and equipment is also done in the afternoon on a regularly scheduled basis.