Springtime brings graduation time for new firefighters. Maple Grove apprentice firefighters completed initial fire fighting training with testing by the Minnesota Fire Service Certification Board.
Each year, Maple Grove teams with several other local fire departments to support a new firefighter training academy. New recruits receive training meeting nationally recognized standards that prepare new firefighters to become certified in firefighting and hazardous materials response.
Most communities in Minnesota are protected by local fire departments that are staffed by volunteer or part-time firefighters. The city of Maple Grove is fortunate to have a group of dedicated citizens who provide fire and emergency response. Most of them have full-time jobs in addition to serving part-time as Maple Grove Firefighters.
Assistant Fire Chief Tim Bush notes, "Sometimes people don’t realize that they can become firefighters without any previous experience. We hire new firefighters and provide the training they need."
Conducting an in-house fire academy allows students to work with the actual fire apparatus, tools and people they will see when these new firefighters start responding to emergency calls with the Maple Grove Fire Department.
"One of the biggest advantages of doing training this way is the ability to bring together instructors from each of the departments that have new firefighters going through this training," Bush said. "We literally have subject matter experts for each phase of the training. This allows us to provide top notch training at a significant savings to each of the departments, because we can share the costs of the training."
This year six fire departments sent new firefighters through the recruit firefighter academy, including eight from Maple Grove. Maple Grove participated with Brooklyn Center, Golden Valley, Plymouth, Robbinsdale, and West Metro Fire Rescue District to sponsor this training.
Maple Grove is currently accepting applications to find the next group of new apprentice firefighters.
According the Fire Chief Scott Anderson, "We have the greatest need for people that are available to respond during the daytime. This is when most people are at work and may not be in the city. We need to find the people that are around during the daytime and willing to respond as needed."
Applications are accepted through Thursday, Aug. 9. Information can be found at www.MGFire.info.