Thank you for your interest in volunteering with the Alert Fire Co. No. 1 of the Downingtown Fire Dept. Below, is some information that we believe may be of use to persons considering membership with our company. For a membership application, please stop by the firehouse anytime, call the firehouse at 610-269-0454 or simply download the application shown below and bring it to the firehouse.
FIRE FIGHTING AND RESCUE MAY NOT BE FOR EVERYONE, BUT VOLUNTEERING CAN BE
There are plenty of opportunities to serve your community through the volunteer fire and rescue service and much of it does not have to be involved with fire fighting.
However, the fire and rescue services are one of the most exciting and challenging professions today. It is this diversity that inspires most men and women to enter the fire and rescue services. We are looking for good people with courage, dedication, assertiveness and a willingness to learn new skills and face new challenges to be an active firefighter and/or rescue technician.
The personal rewards and satisfaction received from the volunteer fire and rescue services are often beyond description. There is a sense of accomplishment and pride after controlling a building fire, joy and elation when a child is born or a life is saved, compassion for accident victims and fulfillment in teaching fire safety. Let us not forget, that one of the biggest rewards, is that you will meet new friends that will last a lifetime!
If you are looking for a change of pace or excitement in your life, the world of emergency services is for you. If this action-filled lifestyle does not appeal to you, have no fear, there is plenty more that can be done in the business side of the Alert Fire Co. No. 1 that does not include running into burning buildings or other emergency rescue situations! We offer Fire Police service to our community, as well. Our members of the Fire Police maintain crowd control, direct traffic and maintain a safe emergency scene for all involved.
In addition, we have various committees within the company, all of which you will be welcomed to join. Running and maintaining a company of our size is time consuming and at times, costly, so the volunteering of your time is something we greatly value. We own and maintain own building and grounds, therefore somebody who is handy with tools and the trades are also an asset to our company. We also maintain a computer system, attend to regular truck and equipment maintenance, as well as tending to fundraising, memorial services, member activities, service projects, parades and a full menu of things that need to be done by our volunteers. We have several different committees that you can choose to volunteer with.
WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO BE A FIREFIGHTER?
Most of our members at the Alert Fire Co. No. 1 have entered the company with no previous fire or rescue experience. The Alert firefighters and rescue technicians pride themselves on a strong foundation of training that begins on your first day! While formal training to ride our apparatus is eventually required, new members are able to ride in a limited capacity after receiving basic in-house training.
Initial formal training consists of the Essentials of Firefighting class taught at our Chester County Emergency Services Training Center in West Chester and Coatesville, PA. This class is approximately 90 hours, and spans a total of four months. Students receive instruction in theories of fire behavior and suppression, forcible entry, ventilation, property salvage, basic hazardous materials training, as well as first aid and CPR. Most of the class is hands-on and successful completion results in National Certification as a Basic Firefighter. Upon completing the Essentials of Firefighting class, members are welcome to take additional specialty classes that are applicable to our operations that interest them. Such classes include vehicle rescue, water rescue, rope rescue, hazardous materials and additional types of firefighting operations. As an active member, you do not need to pay for any training classes. We provide all funding for your training and personal protective equipment!
Perhaps the most important aspect of our training comes from our weekly crew nights which are held every Wednesday night from 7:00 to 9:00 PM. Our officers conduct the Wednesday evening training and drills to sharpen everyone’s skills or to learn about new equipment.
If you are interested in joining our team and are at least 16 years of age, please complete the attached DFD Membership Application and the PA Request for Criminal Record Check forms. Please disregard the cost on the Criminal Record Check form. Our regular company business meeting is the last Monday of each month to accept applications. Stop by our firehouse and we will be more than happy to show you around and explain what we’re all about.