UTAH (ABC4) – When firefighters are on call, they never quite know what to expect. Each unit in Utah serves a great purpose in providing communities with safety and security.

On March 22, ABC4 sheds light on what Utah firefighters and their new recruits have been up to this week.

This week for the Price City Fire Department, firefighters have been battling fires and training new team members.

The department focused on various aspects of firefighter training. This week, new recruits have been training on how to deal with ventilation and how to quickly prepare for when entering a structure fire.

According to Price City Fire, they are currently training 11 new recruits. They go to say that each is training to serve the communities in Helper, Price, Wellington, and Cleveland.

“All our future firefighters are volunteers and we thank them for the devotion,” the department tells ABC4.

Training to be a firefighter is no easy task. In order to become a part of the team a firefighter must meet the following requirements:

  • Must be 18 years of age.
  • Must be a high school graduate or possess a GED certificate.
  • Must have a valid driver’s license and a good driving record.
  • Must have a National Registry or Utah Emergency Medical Technician-Advanced (EMT-A) Certification or higher.
  • Must have the following fire-related certifications that are issued by the Utah Fire Service Certification System or if issued by another state’s system, bear the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC) seal for:
    • Hazardous Materials First Responder – Awareness Level
    • Hazardous Materials First Responder – Operations Level
    • Firefighter 1
    • Firefighter 2

According to Ogden City not only do recruits have to meet the following qualifications, but they also have to take an EMS and Firefighter Manipulative Skills Assessment and an Oral Interview Board.

What’s next? Passing the Physical Ability Test.

The Physical Ability Test is an assessment of how physically capable a new recruit is.

Ogden City states each individual wanting to be a firefighter must be be able to meet the following requirements:

  • Be able to bench press 70% of their own body weight.
  • Complete the Sit and Reach assessment.
    • The assessment is focused on measuring the flexibility of the lower back and hamstring muscles.
  • Be able to grip a minimum of 27 kg of force.
  • Leap at least a minimum of 16 inches vertically.
  • Receive a minimum of 9.2 on the METS test.
  • Be able to endure a minimum of 20 pushups.
  • Manage a minimum of 25 situps.

Once that is all completed, the interested recruit must then complete EMT training and go to fire academy.

This week, not only has Price Fire been training but so has the Salt Lake and West Jordan Fire Department.

Salt Lake kicked off training with recruits working on ladder bailouts.

“Firefighter Survival. Class 47 safely working on ladder bailouts. Saving yourself and your crew members are fundamental skills that must become automatic for firefighters, as conditions can change,” shares the department.

When dealing with a building fire with conditions inside quickly changing, the “conventional methods to exit a window can be hampered by heat, window size, and the firefighter’s profile,” and the only way a “firefighter may be able to escape is to exit the window headfirst onto the ladder.”

West Jordan tackled their training with inviting recruits to embark a house with heavy smoke and conduct routine searches.

“We had the opportunity perform searches inside a house with heavy smoke for training…As you can see in some of the pictures it can almost be impossible to see,” writes the department.

Each fire department within Utah holds a strong supportive line for one another, all determined to encourage, protect, and grow alongside each other.

In West Jordan’s recent exercise, the Draper City Fire Department chimed found various homes for recruit training.

“A huge shout out and thank you to Draper City Fire Department,” they write. “They acquired multiple homes that were scheduled to be demolished for future commercial use.”

According to West Jordan, they invited them and as well as other departments to utilize some of these structures for Fire training.

The department plans to further recruitment training in the next couple of weeks with Hose Line Management training.

“Over the next couple of weeks, we will be able to participate in some great training starting with hose management,” they add. “As you can imagine dragging the hoses around inside a structure is difficult at best. The hose can weigh over a hundred pounds when filled and stretching around corners can be a nightmare.”

West Jordan adds: “We had the opportunity to do some Hose Line Management training and utilized some Nozzle Forward techniques to improve ourselves and be more efficient moving hose lines through structures. We were able to deploy multiple hose lines through the structure at the same time and work through the issues that created.”

There are over 100 fire agencies with the state of Utah.