Just so you know, three of our Station 77, Mi Wuk Sugar Pine Fire Protection District firefighters, are out on a state fire assignment: the County Fire. And yes, the station is covered. They are using Engine 774, a Type 2 apparatus — and this means that the district will be reimbursed around $18k-$20K for this one two week assignment. That is in addition to the wages reimbursed to pay to the staff.
This is great news for the department and the good folks of our community. Not only is it important that the money is greatly needed for our small district fire department, but maybe more importantly, it helps with retention and recruitment for current and future staff. This gives the firefighters more experience and training while allowing them to make a good chunk of income. Paid staff and volunteers get compensated well for their hard work on the fireline.
For many folks nationwide in the fire service, this is what keeps them interested in staying in this line of work. Volunteers especially benefit since their hard work finally has a pay check attached to it.
With our fire department being one of the farthest away from the type of demographic that is able to support the traditional volunteer department, most of our volunteers typically drive for hours to come work here for free. In other words, there are not many folks in our mostly retired community who are able to keep up with the current requirements to stay certified as a volunteer. Assisting in these fires is exactly what these firefighters want and need to continue to commute and spend countless days away from their family and friends.
Our current strike crew has been out since June 30th, originally assigned to the Waverly Fire and then reassigned to the County Fire on July 2nd. They are traditionally on for 24 hours and then off for 24 hours to rest up. They have to take a mandatory 2 days off after working for 14 days in a row, so our guys should be back sometime next week. It is possible that after two days off, the engine could be reassigned.
This is a definite perk for our department, bring in extra $$ for use of the crew and the apparatus. Thank you team and thank you Captain Klyn for helping me get the message out there.
UPDATE: 6:30 p.m. July 4th from Captain James Klyn: Status for E774 has not changed. Crew and engine are working hard, but holding up. E774 is the oldest engine there, and among the few without A/C. The crew is on their 24 hours off at camp currently, but tomorrow (Thursday, July 5) they will be back on the fire.Leave a comment