The Mohawk Fire Department’s Fire Corps team was assembled four years ago when flooding affected the region. The fire department was under enormous stress from the incident and realized that the help of everyday citizens would have reduced the burden. After asking the community for their help, the residents of Mohawk responded, and now the department has a Fire Corps team of 20 volunteers ready to serve when needed.

Fire Corps members assist the department in a variety of ways from directing traffic, answering phones, filling air packs, and setting up exhaust fans during emergencies. Volunteers also help with the rehabilitation of firefighters, which includes monitoring their blood pressure and providing them with food and drink to stabilize their blood sugar level. Some Fire Corps volunteers are trained in first response and CPR.

Beyond emergency response assistance, members also help with grant writing, organize fundraisers, and conduct fire prevention programs. All Fire Corps volunteers must be over 16 years of age and complete an eight hour Occupational Safety and Health Administration training course annually.

The value of Mohawk’s Fire Corps team was once again demonstrated during a massive fire on New Years Day. Firefighters were called onto the scene at 5:45 a.m. and were unable to break until 12:30 p.m. Fire Corps members were on-hand to assist with the clean-up jobs that would have been time consuming for responders after an exhausting fire. Volunteers dried and re-rolled all of the hoses and washed down the fire trucks as they returned to the station.

The efforts of the Fire Corps volunteers do not go unnoticed or unappreciated. Mohawk Lieutenant Jason Clanton realizes their contribution makes the department more efficient and more prepared. “It’s better for the community,” he said. “You can depend on them being ready and that the department is back in service as soon as possible.”

For more information about the Mohawk Fire Department’s Fire Corps team, contact Chief Bernie Sommer at 315-866-4350. Click here to find profiles of other Fire Corps programs.

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