Holliston Firefighter/EMT Graduates from Firefighter Academy

From Fire Chief Michael Cassidy

STOW — State Fire Marshal Peter J. Ostroskey and Massachusetts Firefighting Academy Deputy Director Joseph C. Klucznik presented certificates of completion to members of the Call/Volunteer Recruit Firefighter Training Class #80. The ceremony took place on Monday, February 24, 2020 at 7:00 p.m. at Department of Fire Services, 1 State Road, Stow, MA.

The Call/Volunteer Firefighter Recruit Training program is unique in that it delivers a standard recruit training curriculum, meeting national standards, on nights and weekends to accommodate the schedule of firefighters in suburban and rural areas. Bringing the training closer to the firefighters often means more firefighters can participate. It uses an online e-Blended format that has students doing more work outside of class and taking quizzes online. This allows students more time to practice training skills with instructors and to better control their own workloads and time commitments.

Graduates from 21 Fire Departments
The 36 graduates represent the 21 fire departments of Athol, Barre, Charlton, East Brookfield, Hardwick, Harvard, Holden, Holliston, Hubbardston, Leicester, Millbury, New Braintree, North Brookfield, Orange, Paxton, Pepperell, Princeton, Southbridge, Spencer, Uxbridge, and Winchendon.

(L-R) Holliston Deputy Mark Dellicker, Firefighter Valovcin, State Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey

Holliston’s graduate was Firefighter/EMT Derick Valovcin, who is assigned to Engine 2.

Today’s Fire Department Does Much More than Fight Fires
They are the first ones called to respond to chemical and environmental emergencies, ranging from the suspected presence of carbon monoxide to a gas leak. They may be called to rescue a child who has fallen through the ice or who has locked himself in a bathroom. They rescue people from stalled elevators and those trapped in vehicle crashes. They test and maintain their equipment, ranging from self-contained breathing apparatus to hydrants, hoses, power tools, and vehicles.

In this Massachusetts Firefighting Academy program, they learn all these skills and more from certified fire instructors who are also experienced firefighters. Students learn all the basic skills they need to respond to fires, to contain and to control them. They also receive training in public fire education, hazardous material incident mitigation, flammable liquids, stress management, firefighter self-rescue, and vehicle extrication. The intensive program includes classroom instruction, physical fitness training, firefighter skills training and live firefighting practice.

Basic Firefighter Skills
Students receive classroom training in all basic firefighter skills. They practice first under non-fire conditions and then during controlled fire conditions. To graduate, students must demonstrate proficiency in life safety, search and rescue, ladder operations, water supply, pump operation, and fire attack. Fire attack operations range from mailbox fires to multiple-floor or multiple room structural fires.

Graduates have completed 240 hours of training on nights and weekends. Upon successful completion of this program, all students have met the standards of National Fire Protection Association 1001. In addition, they have the ability to become certified to the level of Firefighter I and II and Hazardous Materials First Responder Operational Level by the Massachusetts Fire Training Council, which is accredited by the National Board on Fire Service Professional Qualifications.

Congratulations Firefighter Valovcin!

Press Release

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