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Redneck4_life

Rural Fire department volunteer or paid

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How does the fire department in your rural area work is it volunteer or payed. Mine is volunteer and after you join your on 90 probation before they give you all your equipment and let you officially respond to calls

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They technically aren't volunteer but "Part-time". They don't get paid unless they have a call. Then it's something like $50 for the first 3 hours and so much per hour after that or something.

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The fire dept. is evolving. Volunteer since early last century, it changed a few years ago (almost 10, now!) to Paid, full-time 10-hour day coverage with a small crew, call dept. at night and weekends. Four duty crews rotate weekly for night and weekend coverage, 1 week on and 3 off. Hourly rate paid per call. Pay rate set by a base plus stipends, such as certifications and years service. The range is pretty much $10-$20. If you save up your time sheets, you can get a nice check before Christmas.

Within the next few months, they're adding two more full-time positions, changing the coverage to 12 hours, 7 days.

The call volume has increased steadily over the past 25 years, from 250 or so in 1980, to 900 in 2004. 75-80% EMS, with a private ambulance company transporting.

I spent the first 16 years doing it 100% free, and was dragged, kicking and screaming, into the world of monetary compensation. I thought of the EMS and Fire World as a great hobby, enjoyed giving back to the community, etc., etc.

Now, with the increased call volume,required trainings, in-services, protocol roll-outs, re-certs, Homeland Security, HAZMAT, RIT, KFC and WD-40, I guess getting an hourly wage is o.k.

Besides, my hobby became a career when I was hired by a private ambulance service almost 10 years ago.

Now I fish.

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We have two paid EMT-Ps on weekdays (5AM-6PM) with vol. drivers. Nights, weekends, code 3 (third calls) are all vols. Fire has been all vols since the beginning, 1828. With 1800 calls a year, 90% EMS.

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