Becoming a Member
Saturday July 22, 2017

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The Simsbury Volunteer Fire Company is always in search of motivated individuals to assist us in our mission of providing professional emergency services to the Town of Simsbury. 

Becoming a member in the Company requires a large investment of time and effort from both the individual and their family. Depending on the class of membership, members are required to attend a certain percentage of drills and incidents each year to maintain good-standing in the Company. The Simsbury Volunteer Fire Company holds on average, forty-eight in-house training drills and meetings per year on Monday nights. There are also several other in-house drills held as needed throughout the calendar year. In addition, members of the Company are highly encouraged to attend training classes and seminars outside of the Company, most of which are paid for by the Simsbury Fire District. The Company also holds several fund-raising functions throughout the year which are only as successful as our membership participation allows them to be.

There are three classes of membership to which an interested person may apply. They are Active, Technical and Junior Firefighter.

 

Benefits of Becoming a Member

The Simsbury Volunteer Fire Company is truly 100% volunteer. Members do not receive payment for attending training classes and drills, or for going on call-outs. However that does not mean that there are no benefits to membership. Benefits can be measured by those that are tangible, and those which are intangible.

Membership in the Fire Company is fulfilling and enriching in many ways. The Fire Company and the fire service in general is a family, and throughout the year there are several Fire Company sponsored events such as a family picnic, a family skate at a local ice rink, a children's Christmas party and an adult Christmas party. Members enjoy strong camaraderie and form many lasting friendships.

As a member you will have the opportunity to challenge yourself mentally and physically, and find personal growth in the process.

Most importantly, as a member in the Fire Company you will be providing an incredibly vital community service to your family, friends, neighbors and the Town of Simsbury. Beyond providing fire protection and other emergency services, the Fire Company is very active in our community, and each year through various events we are out and very engaged with the public. Some events include our Torchlight Parade, Fisherman's Breakfast, Open House and Fire Prevention Week school visits, just to name a few.

For our members who qualify the Simsbury Fire District provides a pension plan based on years served with the Fire Company. The District also subsidizes membership in a local gym for members who are eligible and their families.

The Town of Simsbury offers a tax abatement program as authorized by the State of Connecticut. Fire Company members are eligible to participate in the program after two years of service and can eventually qualify for property tax relief of $1,000. Members may also qualify for additional benefits as offered by the State of Connecticut.

 

Membership Application Packet in Adobe Acrobat PDF format

 

Active Membership

The Active members constitute the majority of the emergency personnel in the Company. For the most part, it is the Active members who don the coats and helmets and respond to emergency incidents. Applicants for Active membership must have reached their eighteenth birthday, and shall not have passed their fifty-sixth birthday.

Applicants who are accepted as Active members will serve a minimum of twelve months as a Probationary Firefighter and will have to meet the requirements as designated by the Chief of the Department before advancing to Regular Firefighter status. Within the first year of service, new members are expected to complete a course in basic firefighting adhering the National Fire Protection Association's Standard 1001, Standard for Fire Fighter Professional Qualifications, such as FireFighter I. Even if applicants enter the Company already having already completed the minimal qualified training or higher, they will still be required to serve a twelve month probationary period. Probationary Firefighters must attend a minimum of 75% of scheduled drills and meetings, and 25% of all alarms for their station.

Once a Probationary Firefighter has satisfactorily meet all the prescribed requirements, by a recommendation of their captain, they may be brought before the Company for a vote to be promoted to the status of Regular Firefighter.

 

Technical Membership

Technical members serve the company in a non-emergency capacity such as being a photographer. Technical positions in the Simsbury Volunteer Fire Company are generally created as by the Company as the need arises. Persons interested in possibly serving in a technical position are welcome to inquire as to any current opportunities. Persons who feel that they might be able to provide a previously unutilized service or skill to the Company are always welcome to inquire.

Technical members shall meet the requirements of their task or service as outlined in the job description as set forth by the Chief of the Department. They are required to serve fifty or more hours of volunteer work per quarter in accordance with the job description, and are required to attend 65% of all regular meetings, but are not required to attend drills except when attendance is incidental to the performance of their assigned task or service.

 

Junior Membership

The Simsbury Volunteer Fire Company is extremely proud of its Junior Firefighter Program, as the Juniors are quite literally the future of our Company. Many of our current members started as civic-minded Junior Firefighters, and several have flourished and grown into the officers who lead our Company today.

The safety of all members is a top priority for the Company, and so, Juniors are restricted to operating only in a supporting role during an emergency incident. Other activities may be restricted as safety dictates. For the most part however, Junior Firefighters are allowed to train alongside the Regular Firefighters, ride the apparatus to drills and incidents, and participate to the fullest of their ability, as long as it is deemed reasonably safe to do so.

Interested persons who are at least fifteen years of age and have not yet reached their eighteenth birthday may apply for the position of Junior Firefighter. More about the program can be found on our Junior Firefighters Program page.

 

Application Process

Age appropriate residents of the Town of Simsbury are welcome to apply for membership in the Simsbury Volunteer Fire Company. Applicants must be able to provide proof of permanent residency status in the United States, and be able to demonstrate their ability to remain here for three years or more. If the applicant is planning to leave town to attend college, it must be at least six months from entry into the Company until leaving for school.

The first step in the process is to get an application from the Dispatch Office at the Main Station, fill it out completely and return it. Those applying for Junior Firefighter must also submit a letter of permission from their parent(s) or legal guardian(s). The application will be read at our next monthly business meeting which is generally the fourth Monday of the month.

Afterwards, you will be contacted and asked to meet with the Interview Committee, who generally meet on the evening of the first Tuesday of the new month. The purpose of the Interview Committee meeting is to get to know you, and vice-versa. The requirements and commitments that you will be asked to undertake should you be admitted to the Company will be explained in detail. You will be asked a set of standard questions, and you will have the opportunity to ask any questions of us that you might have. The committee will also ask you to sign a release authorizing them to perform a background check.

The next step will be to make an appointment with the departmental physician for a physical exam, the cost of which is covered by the Simsbury Fire District. Applicants must be able to pass the exam and physically perform the duties of a firefighter as set forth in the National Fire Protection Association's Standard 1001, Standard for Fire Fighter Professional Qualifications.

Persons who successfully pass their physical exam and background check will then have their application brought before the Company at the next scheduled business meeting, and following a recommendation from the Interview Committee, be voted on for admission into the Company. Shortly afterwards, applicants will be notified via U.S. Mail as to the result of their application for membership. New members will also be notified of where and when to report, and given the contact information of their supervising officers.

 

More Information

If you still have questions and would like to learn more, contact Chief Patrick T. Tourville. To start the process, stop by the Dispatch Office at the Main Station and ask for a membership application, or download an application and return it to the on-duty dispatcher.

Membership Application Packet in Adobe Acrobat PDF format

 

Simsbury Dispatch Office
871 Hopmeadow Street
Simsbury, CT 06070
860-658-1971
Assistant Chief Patrick Tourville
Chief of Personnel
Simsbury Volunteer Fire Company
871 Hopmeadow Street
Simsbury, CT 06070
860-658-1971
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 

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