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VOLUNTEER WITH

WEST THURSTON FIRE

We appreciate your interest in being a volunteer with West Thurston Regional Fire Authority. We want all of our potential volunteers to have a good understanding of our district requirements for volunteers; these requirements are put into place to ensure the safety of our volunteer and career staff as well as those in the community that we serve.

West Thurston Regional Fire Authority is an ever evolving volunteer fire department that is supported by career firefighters. We are offering opportunities in clerical service, public education, emergency medical care and fire suppression.

VOLUNTEER FIREFIGHTER/EMT

BASIC REQUIREMENTS
Our policy requires that you meet all the requirements listed below, you may contact the phone number above for any questions regarding these requirements.

  • Age: 18+

  • Highschool Grad or GED

  • Valid Washington Drivers License

  • Must have the ability to pass a Career FF/EMT medical physical

  • Must have the ability to pass a National Driver's Abstract

  • Must have the ability to pass a National Background Check

TRAINING PROCESS/ SHIFT REQUIREMENTS

Training Requirements:

Volunteer FF/EMT's are required to obtain/ maintain Firefighter 1, Hazmat Operations, Hazmat Awareness, and EMT-B level certifications to work as a Firefighter/EMT.

 

All training and equipment are provided. Volunteers are not required to obtain these certifications prior to applying.

 

Fire Academy is currently offered once a year in the fall and EMT class is held twice a year, sponsorship for academies is offered to active members. Sign-up for these classes are approximately every January (Spring class) and July (Fall class). Classes are 3-4 months in length, and usually consisted of 2 evenings and 1 weekend day. To maintain status as a recruit in academy students must maintain an 80% average while attending all classes and skills weekends. Missing classes or dropping below 80% will result in failing the academies.

 

Job Duties: 

  • Transport patients to the hospital

  • Perform Basic Life Support Services

  • Fire suppression and prevention

  • Operate power tools and manual tools

  • Drive and operate Fire/EMS apparatuses such as an aid unit, fire engine, support unit, water tender, and other vehicles

  • Perform a variety of rescue services

  • Continue training and maintenance of certifications

  • Maintain facilities and apparatuses

  • Attend and participate in Public Education Events

  • Community Outreach

  • Ability to pass certain health standards

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FAQ About Becoming a volunteer

Q. Who can be a volunteer firefighter or EMT?

A. If you have the desire to serve, you can be a volunteer firefighter or EMT. You don’t need any prior experience in emergency services; you will receive the training you need when you join the department

Q. How long is the training?

A. EMT academy is 3-4 months, 2 nights during the week 4 hours each and usually every other Saturday for 6 hours. Fire academy is 3-4 months, 2 nights during the week and 1 day every other weekend.

Q. What are the benefits of being a volunteer firefighter or EMT?

A. Volunteer first responders help their fellow citizens in times of need. Volunteers enjoy a sense of accomplishment, achievement, and pride in the work they do. In addition, volunteers get to learn new skills, make new friends, be a part of a team, give back to their community, and make a real difference.

Q. What will I do as a volunteer in my local fire department?

A. You will do a variety of things such as, fire Suppression, Emergency Medical Services, Hazardous Materials (Hazmat) Response, Search and Rescue, Traffic Incident Management (TIM) and Highway Safety, Public Information and Education, Inspections, Fundraising and Public Events

Q. Do you have to live in district?

A. No, but we would love if you lived relatively close in case there is a call back and you are able to respond to the station.

Q. Are there advancement opportunities as a volunteer?

A. Many individuals volunteer to gain experience and training to prepare for a career in the emergency response service. Most departments with career firefighters and EMTs prefer to fill open positions by hiring internally.

Q. Do volunteer firefighters get the same training as a career firefighter?

A. While volunteer firefighters are trained in all of the same basic skills as their paid counterparts (e.g., first aid, equipment usage, safety protocol, fire management, search and rescue), their knowledge is typically not as expansive given that it isn’t their full-time job.

Q. How Much Time Will I Need to Spend as Volunteer?

A. Becoming a volunteer is a serious commitment — but we ensure it’s as flexible as possible to fit in with and work around your day-to-day life.

For those looking to be Firefighters and EMTs, this includes training that is conveniently scheduled on nights and weekends at locations in or our district, flexible duty shift schedules and more. A new recruit without any prior training can expect to spend 300-400 hours their first year going through the process, initial training, events and more.

SCHEDULE A

RIDE-A-LONG

Schedule a station tour during office hours with one of our staff. Take a look at the apparatus, facilities, and meet the crew!

To schedule please call 360-352-1614 or email andrea.reynoldson@wtrfa.org

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