Firefighters play many roles

As a citizen, do you recognize your local fire department as a partner in community services? Your fire department, whether full-time or volunteer, has an important function within your community.
The fire department performs fire suppression and life-saving functions, and responds to many other challenging emergencies such as motor vehicles accidents.
Today, the public safety needs of communities increasingly place fire personnel in the role of emergency responders–first on the scene . . . not only in fire emergencies but medical ones, too.
This is the case in Fort Frances when the ambulance service is busy with another emergency.
I have been on two fire departments, one which was full-time/part-time in Fort Frances and the other was volunteer in Alberton. It was an honour to serve them both (presently I am back with Fort Frances).
In all my years of firefighting, I have seen the advantage of having a fire department staffed with personnel 24 hours a day.
I can recall countless times responding to a fire and arriving on scene to find the full-time firefighters on duty already had knocked down the fire; thus preventing its spread and protecting property.
True, if a home doesn’t have working smoke alarms and a fire strikes with people inside, the result will be tragic . . . regardless whether the local fire department is full-time or volunteer.
Also, if fire goes undetected and burns for some period of time, the results of property loss more than likely will be the same whether the fire department responds in five minutes or 15.
Fact: Fire is very powerful and doubles in size every 30 seconds, and can engulf a home in six minutes. But smoke can engulf a home in two minutes.
Therefore, when fire is reported, it is critical firefighters and equipment respond within minutes.
The citizens of Fort Frances are very fortunate to have a fire department staffed with firefighters around the clock.
Whether there is a fire, vehicle accident, or medical emergency–you can rest assured fire personnel will respond within minutes to provide fire suppression, rescue, and even medical aid until ambulance crews arrive.
And when firefighters like Greg Allan visit our schools, the fire safety education they provide is very valuable and has saved lives!
Remember: If students never need what they learn about fire safety, they have lost nothing. But if students never learn about fire safety, they may lose everything . . . their family and their life!

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