Everyone knows that firefighters help the communities they serve by mitigating and putting out fires—It’s in the name, after all. However, some people may not realize the many other ways that firefighters help serve the areas that they work in. Familiarizing yourself with the many ways firefighters help the community may help you gain a deeper appreciation for these real-life heroes.
Providing Medical Assistance as EMTs and Paramedics
One of the main ways firefighters help the community is by providing medical assistance. These multi-talented folks are trained to provide emergency care as both EMTs and paramedics. In fact, the majority of calls that firefighters receive aren’t even fires—they are medical emergencies.
In such cases, firefighters act as first responders and provide immediate treatment before transferring the patient to the hospital for further care. The next time you see a fire truck rushing off somewhere, don’t automatically assume it’s a fire. There is a good chance that it is on its way to a medical emergency.
Educating the Public
Firefighters also serve as valuable educators in the communities they serve. Often, firefighters take the time to venture out to schools or nursing homes and provide insightful public education regarding fire prevention. In some cases, firefighters may even visit people’s homes and conduct an evaluation of the fire equipment and hazards on the property.
Rescuing Animals in Need
It turns out that the stereotypical idea of a firefighter rescuing a cat from a tree isn’t too far off the mark. Yet another way that firefighters serve their communities is by helping rescue animals in need. While a firefighter’s top priority is helping their fellow humans, they also do everything they can to find and treat pets whenever possible—from providing CPR to rescuing a cat that got stuck on a roof.
Specializing in Specific Emergency Situations
There are many different types of firefighters that specialize in responding to a variety of different emergency situations. For example, wildland firefighters are specifically trained to prevent, control, and extinguish wildfires while firefighters located near large bodies of water will likely specialize in water rescue and marine fire services. To best assist their communities, firefighters develop highly varied skillsets and expertise based on the needs of the location they serve.