Volunteer as a First Responder

Published 2:44 pm Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Have you ever thought about becoming a volunteer fire firefighter or EMT?
As a volunteer you will be joining a proud tradition that dates back to the very beginning of our nation, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were among the many founding fathers involved in the volunteer fire service.
Today, volunteers still comprise a majority of our nation’s fire service. In fact, 70 percent of all firefighters are volunteers, with over one million volunteer firefighters and emergency medical personnel in the U.S. Half of all Americans live in communities served by fire departments that are either volunteer or a combination of volunteer and career (full-time and paid).
In addition to providing life-saving services, these volunteers save communities across the nation a significant amount of money. It would cost U.S. taxpayers an estimated $140.7 billion every year if all the volunteer first responders were replaced with career staff.
Below you will find information to help you get started, including what to expect as a volunteer firefighter or EMT, how to volunteer with the Columbus Fire Department and a list of commonly used terms to help you become familiar with the fire and emergency service field.
What to Expect
By becoming a volunteer firefighter or EMT, you will play a crucial role in protecting your neighbors from disasters and emergencies of all kinds. You will also be joining a tight-knit group of men and women dedicated to providing life-saving services to their community.
Being a volunteer first responder is very demanding and requires a great deal of commitment and training. The reward you will receive will be knowing that you have made a difference in someone’s life. As a volunteer firefighter or EMT, you can expect to:
•    Attend weekly and/or  monthly meetings and training sessions.
•    Work with a great group of caring and passionate men and women.
•    Know your strengths and weakness.
•    Most of all be proud to make a difference in the community that you live in.
•    If you have questions and would like to speak with someone on the phone, please call Columbus Fire Department at 828-894-3667. You can also come by the fire station during normal business hours from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday – Friday to get an application.

– article submitted
by Columbus Fire Department Chief Tony Priester

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox