Damascus Trying to Form Fire Corps

Monday, 23 August 2010

By Kevin Howell, SalemNews.net

The Damascus Volunteer Fire Department is seeking volunteers to form a Fire Corps.

The Fire Corps, a federal program administered locally by fire and EMS departments, provides much needed non-emergency assistance through conducting fund-raising efforts, promoting life-safety education or offering administrative services.

Volunteers in the program also assist with rehab during fires, for which the department provides to most of the other area fire departments, checking the vitals of active firefighters on scene and ensuring they have enough fluids or stay warm in the winter, according to the DVFD's Candice McDonald, a state advocate for the Fire Corps program.

"Call volumes- both fire and EMS- are increasing each year across the nation," she explained. "And rehab is something that is being emphasized...You can't predict a fire, so if we have people out on rehab, we're taking them away from the fire ground. We don't want to put strain on the trained volunteers [who can fight the fires]."

Volunteers with medical background will be used in the rehab units, while those without will work in fund-raising and administrative assistance, McDonald said.

The Damascus fire department is operated fully by volunteers and covers all of Goshen and part of Butler and Knox townships.

The department is also recruiting volunteers to serve as EMT/firefighters.

Fire Corps, a component of the Department of Homeland Security's Citizen Corps program, is a national grassroots effort to increase the capacity of volunteer, career and combination fire and EMS departments through community volunteers. The program provides resources for departments to utilize volunteers in non-emergency roles so they can develop, implement and sustain programs and services, thus helping the department meet the needs of its community.

For information or to become a Fire Corps volunteer, contact McDonald at 330-831-2867 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

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