Lt. Necole Dundy Pittman said her 11 years with the Bridgeport Fire Department is proof that it’s not “a man’s job.”
Firefighter Mohammad Kahn said his bigger stature is proof that you don’t have to be thin and muscular.
Being a firefighter, they both said, is mostly about endurance.
Bridgeport is looking for new firefighters and is hoping to attract a diverse crew to become the newest of the city’s bravest.
Kahn said his time training to become a firefighter helped build up his endurance and prove that anyone ready to commit to the job could do it.
In an effort to help those worried about the $175 cost of CPAT, the city announced a scholarship program recently that will cover the cost of the test for 150 applicants.
Typically, anyone with a criminal record would steer away from firefighting positions, Dundy Pittman said. But a few years ago, Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim introduced a second chance opportunity for firefighters in the city.
A City Council advisory committee thinks Eugene should establish a new payroll tax to raise $22.8 million to help pay for police, fire and other services.
The proposed tax would phase in over 6 years, to be paid by employers and employees.
The idea traces its origins to last fall, when Councilors signed off on $9 million for the Eugene Police to hire 10 more officers to improve response times to calls for service.
Now comes the next step.
"How do we build a system with stable funding into the future," Chief Chris Skinner said, "and what does that look like?"
No final decisions have been made.
But a proposal from an advisory committee established by the City calls for a new payroll tax to help pay for police, fire, medics, municipal court, homeless services, at-risk youth services and jail beds.
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Assemblyman Phil Palmesano is reminding volunteer firefighters and the community about a tuition reimbursement opportunity through the Fireman's Association of the State of New York (FASNY).
FASNY has developed the Higher Education Learning Plan, or FASNY HELP, as an incentive to recruit and retain members of volunteer fire departments. The program will provide tuition reimbursement to student volunteers.
“FASNY’s HELP program is a great way for prospective students to get involved in community service while paying for their continuing education,” said Palmesano. “Volunteer firefighters are in demand all over the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions, and this program could help meet the demand while allowing individuals to give back to their community and secure a quality education.”
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Purdue University researchers are developing firefighters that look more like R2-D2 than anyone in an Indianapolis Fire Department uniform.
Purdue researchers have been working on firefighting robots since 2011. In 2015, they rolled out significant improvements, with a robot that had better optics and was nearly indestructible.
Now, researchers have moved a step further, giving the lawnmower-sized, tank-shaped robot even more features. Purdue officials said the improved robot already has been successfully tested in the field, and they are looking for partners for continued research and to take the technology to market.
The Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization has filed a patent to protect the new technology, which they say will make firefighters’ jobs less dangerous and give robots more ability to maneuver in a burning structure. The new technology is an automatic T-valve system that can remove water from the fire hose when the robot moves to a new location, making it substantially easier to more the hose from place to place.
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To help celebrate Valentine’s Day, the Chester County Fire Chiefs Association is paying special tribute to couples who keep the spark of romance alive by saving lives together as volunteer firefighters.
Malvern Battalion Fire Chief Neil Vaughn came to Andrea’s rescue after she was in a car accident during slippery winter conditions. Andrea, a school administrator, was dressed in her skirt and heels, and Neil gave her his turnout gear coat to help her stay warm.
The two would run into each other again on the job. Neil responded to a fire alarm at the school where Andrea works. Fortunately, there was no real fire, but more than a few sparks flew between the pair.
As the couple’s relationship grew so did their commitment to helping fight fires in Chester County. A third generation firefighter, Neil moved up the ranks, continued his education in training, participated in drills and meetings, and dedicated himself to the fire service and its members.
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