Calling All Firefighter/Power Washers

Hey guys! I’m considering volunteering at my local FD, but I’ve never run my business and volunteered at the same time. I was a pro FF for 15 years and just did my business on the side until my situation changed and I tried to cut ties with the Fire Service permanently. Problem is, it’s been over 5 years and it’s still in my blood…I still have my custom axe, Pro bar, and NY hook in my closet, and I can’t bring myself to get rid of them. I’ve had ADHD my whole life, and the Fire Service was the only “medication” that ever worked for me, and I’m really feeling that “hole” in my life now that it’s gone.

This post is a bit of a ramble, but the point is that I’d like some input from you guys who are still full time or volunteer firefighters…How to you manage the schedule, how do you view your business, do you think it’s even practical to volunteer and run your business at the same time?

@Innocentbystander How do you handle those days when you hear a Federal Q wind up and you literally feel it in your heart, but you’re not on the truck?

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When I hear it now I just pull over on the side of the road. I think I was burnt out befire I quit. My old fire chief passed away yesterday and it was the first time I thought about the FD in a long time. I would hate to have to go thru 1&2, ERT, EMT recerts and all of that again.

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I understand what you’re saying, and I’ve tried to just put those awesome years behind me as well. I was also burnt out and done with the petty “office politics” when I left, but I’ve really been feeling the loss. I truly feel like the Fire Service saved me at a time in my life when I could have gone either way, and it’s always been like this “big brother” to me, if that makes sense. Now, that “big brother” is gone, and I miss it tremendously.

I’m really sorry to hear about your Chief…in usual IBS style, you’ve stayed loyal to the people who matter, haven’t you. Thanks William!

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As far as what you said about certs…I still have 1&2, RT (it’s not ERT anymore, LOL), Wildland, DO, etc, but I did let my EMT-I lapse, and I’ll have to get that again, but I have always loved to train and learn, so I really don’t mind.

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@Innocentbystander Also, I’m pretty sure I have met Chief House. I don’t remember where or when, but I do believe I took a class from him or something back in the day.

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The firehouse was my first love. To honest I think it why my business works. But if I had to choose it would be the firehouse. I’m always upfront with my customers I tell them I’m a fireman first and if I have to go or get called then that’s what is going to happen I have never had a customer that didn’t understand but I set that expectation up front

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Are you full time or volunteer?

Both at the moment

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Volunteer I love it!! Go to them when I can. I don’t carry my pager when washing. But still go to my share. Do see how u could get burnt out though.

You shouldn’t have any thoughts or concern if your just volunteering…

Juggling a fulltime spot in the industry is a much different story.

I dont volunteer as much. Just go the good calls at this point. But I love it nothing better in the world I dont care what call it is it just never gets old

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I never got burnt out with the job itself…just got tired of small-town politics and the lack of toughness (mental and emotional, mainly) of the kids coming in…If all I ever had to do was run calls, you couldn’t have drug me out of it. That’s what I liked about volunteering before I got hired…all of the “fun”, none of the drama.

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I like that attitude.

Haha the kids drive me crazy but it’s the nature of it now. I figure Its my duty to pass along as much as I can in the best way I can. If they choose to do it another way or not learn be6they dont like the way its taught or they get thier feelings well at least I tried

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I’m full time fire and I love it. It has its moments for sure, but I still enjoy coming to work every single day. I wouldn’t think volunteering would be an issue. You just respond when you can and don’t when your working. That’s pretty much how most volunteer departments around me work anyway. Most of our volunteer depts have at least one guy at the station during the day and most have gone to a paid certified guy during the day. The rest is volunteer and at night. Like they mentioned above, most all of my customers know I am a fire fighter and they are understanding in the event something comes up and I have to reschedule. I was deployed to Panama City last year after hurricane Michael for 10 days and had to reschedule several jobs and never got the first complaint. I think as long as your up front with people and treat them right, you will be fine.

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I’m full time in a neighboring city, volly in my home town, and just starting up my pw business. My full time dept has a very low call volume, we’ve had a full week without a single call. 24/48 gives me time to sit down on the recliner and do so much research on this forum it’s crazy. I’m not that busy pw’ing right now so I respond to the volly calls when I’m available. But I know as my business grows I’ll have to make less runs, but like @Firefighter4hire said firefighting is my passion and honestly the adrenaline rush is like a drug to me. Go get on that volunteer department, you know as well as we do, that rush is something you can’t find in many jobs or hobbies. I consider volunteer firefighting as a hobby, probably just so I can justify all the time and fuel spent :joy::joy::joy::joy:!

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