Thursday, March 19, 2009

My reply to AESN

Before You read any further know that Bob Edwards the man behind AESN is a close friend of mine.He is a gentleman and very knowledgeable of the fire service.He and I may disagree but it is only when I am right.The following is my reply to comments on AESN.If you are not on the AESN mailing list,get on it.It is the best source of info for emergency services in the state of Arkansas.
Regarding the training issues You and Captain Fred have commented on,I would like to make a comment of my own.I do not know of anyone who wants to have less training.I do know of some who want more flexibility in training,Let me give an illustration,one of the best young guys on our department works as a millwright and is subject to call as well as his regular shift work.This past year he attended 2 separate 16 hour classes,however because of work he was not able to attend the final night of each class.Therefore he had no documented training.Now this same young man and I have spent quite a bit of time in going over pump ops,fire flows,apparatus ops,I guess you could even call it a mentoring relationship.This is training but it is not certifiable.Now I am sure some one will say "you can submit this for training".I have been told this by several people but no one seems to be able to tell me the process.I have been asked several questions by fire fighters that I haven't been able to get anyone to answer.Questions such as #1 If I don't get my training this year can I still be on the fire department?I did get this question answered-with at least 3 different answers from 3 different"officials"#2 If I don't get my training this year what do I have to do to get back active? I got this one answered to 3 different ways by 3 different "officials"#3 What if I have a lot more than 24 hours training,can I carry them over?#4 Why did that department get that many hours training for xyz course and I only got half that many?I have noticed that the people who are most rigid in their view of training have a background quite different from most of the people who are firefighters in this part of the state.Any time some one says cut off their act 833 funding I get suspicious.I wonder where their heart is ?do they really want to help the little rural departments that are struggling to survive?I think some people believe that a community would be better of with no fire or first responder coverage than have it with out their idea of being well trained.

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