News Release: Bradfordville Volunteer Fire & Rescue Department
(TALLAHASSEE, FL) - January 20, 2014 - Four members of the Bradfordville Volunteer Fire & Rescue Department are the first area recipients of vouchers for a complete set of new bunker gear, valued at $1,800.00 for each set, funded by a SAFER Grant. On Tuesday, January 21, 2014, Philip Doyle, Justin Lazzara, Sean Ruane , and Kevin Speer will receive their new bunker gear, which includes turnout coat and pants manufactured by Morning Pride and helmets by Bullard. The presentation by Charlie Frank, president of the Northwest Florida Volunteer Firefighter Weekend, will take place at 6:30 PM at the Bradfordville Community Center (old schoolhouse) located at 3439 Bannerman Road in Tallahassee. Media and public are welcome to attend.
The Northwest Florida Volunteer Firefighter Weekend Council expanded its grant offerings during 2013 event to offer any Florida volunteer firefighter completing their Task Book Sign Off and live fire evolutions or S-130 (Introduction Wildland Firefighting) and S-190 (Introduction Wildland Fire Behavior) during the event and then going on to complete the rest of the Firefighter I requirements, a voucher to purchase a complete set of gear including, boots, pants, coat, gloves, hood, and helmet.
The annual Northwest Florida Volunteer Firefighter Weekend provides basic and advanced training to volunteer firefighters in Florida for no cost. Last year, 210 volunteer firefighters received more than 3,600 hours of free training.
Under the tutelage of Bradfordville Chief Karl Hook, the four new Florida certified firefighters completed the required First Responder course instructed by Jon Berryman, Fire in the Field Wildland Firefighting course (which includes S130 and S190) instructed by Chis Worrell, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Incident Command online courses, and the Firefighter I course instructed by Mike Long of the Monticello Volunteer Fire Department. From September 18 – 22, the team attended the 2013 Northwest Florida Volunteer Firefighter Weekend in Niceville. They completed two days of skill sign-offs and three days of live burns to complete their Firefighter I requirements.
In 2011, the Northwest Florida Volunteer Firefighter team applied for and received a FEMA Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency (SAFER) grant which allowed participants in specific programs to attend. Participants in specific courses are eligible to have the grant pay all expenses including lost wages, lodging, meals, and mileage. During the 2012 event, the grant enabled the local Miccosukee Volunteer Fire Department to send nine of their volunteers.
In addition to providing the Northwest Florida Volunteer Firefighter Weekend scholarships and vouchers for bunker gear, the Northwest Florida Volunteer Firefighter Weekend Council now has SAFER grant funds to provide instructors at no cost to volunteer fire department to teach FF I skills and complete the first sign off for the FF I Task Book. This pilot program will target the northwest and north region of Florida across the I-10 corridor. If volunteer fire departments need financial support for the online FF I program, a department may be eligible for a grant through Florida Association of Counties Trust. For additional information on the online FF I program and possible funding, go to the following link: www.myfloridacfo.com/Division/SFM/BFST/Documents/Guidelines_FFPartICertificateofCompletionProgram_Ver1.7.pdf. For more information on instructors for the skills portion, please email Patrick Garvey at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This unique and valuable training event is just around the corner, so volunteer fire departments should mark their calendars now for September 17-21, 2014. Registration opens June 1, 2014 through the volunteer weekend website listed below. For further information on how your Florida volunteer fire department can take advantage of this training and grant, contact Charlie Frank at 877-686-3839, ext. 2 or check the website at http://www.nwflvolunteerffweekend.com .