Over the past couple of months we’ve informed you of what it takes to be a volunteer firefighter here in your community. Whether you live in Patterson, Westley, Grayson, Crows Landing, Newman, or Diablo Grande, the requirements (and the commitment) are the same.
When considering joining our organization, the following questions may come up; “how much time do I need to dedicate to training” and, “how much time will I be required to be away from my job?” The answer to the first question varies on the level of involvement our volunteers want to commit to.
Initially the required training hours are approximately 156 hours. This will provide “basic” firefighter training including structural firefighting, fighting wild land fires, CPR and First Aid, learning about noses and nozzles, working with ropes, and other classes that will teach you the initial skills to assist others in the event of an emergency.
Additional training is offered for those individuals that are looking to do more; perhaps someone who is looking at beginning a fulltime career as a firefighter; someone looking to gain a further, more in-depth knowledge of the fire service, or someone wanting to do more with their new-found skills, knowledge, and abilities. Whichever track you choose, we’re here to get you going in the right direction.
The second question is easy to answer. We understand you wanting to help out your community, but there must be priorities set-forth in your life, and we take these priorities very seriously.
First, is your family – you must take care of their needs prior to anyone else’s. Second, is your employer – without you working, it’s very hard to take care of your first priority. With that, open communication with your employer and the endeavor you’re taking on is paramount. We want you to partner with your employer, discussing what the requirements are, and should you need to periodically adjust your schedule to attend a particular training, attend classes, or even respond to assist someone in need, your employer will understand and work with you, as well as the Fire District.
We have a great rapport with many local (and not so local) employers throughout the valley and beyond that work with us, and you as the employee, by allowing you to participate as needed in delivering public safety to our community.
This is who we are...
As of May 2011, local volunteer firefighter Anthony Cordova has been serving the West Side as part of West Stanislaus County’s Fire Protection District. Cordova, who also serves as a laborer for a construction company, currently assists Fire Station two at 1950 Keystone Pacific Parkway in Patterson.
He has had three years of experience in the position and believes that volunteering his time for the community is the best outlet possible.
“This is all I have known for the last three years,” said Cordova. “I love what I do. I plan on making a profession out of this. The fire house, the apparatus, and the brothers and sisters I share with—this is all a part of the lifestyle we live. You can’t beat it.”
Cordova, a born and raised Pattersonite, enjoys spending time with his two sisters and four brothers when he is not on duty. His other interests include sports, hunting, fishing, or any other activity that encourages him to be outside.