Drill of the Week: Initial Drills for Volunteer Departments

Keeping your department well trained and abreast of new evolutions is a very difficult task. In career departments, drill schedules can be based around work schedules-so many tours per month mean so many subjects. In a volunteer department, too many factors influence when firefighters attend drills: Firefighter availability, having the money to attend training schools or hire outside speakers, and an ever-changing group of members are just some factors that may affect the continuity of a training program. Because of this, a volunteer fire department’s drill schedule must try to be flexible to address these and other problems. Deciding what topic to drill on, when and where to hold the drill, and how to reach the most members are issues many training officers face in volunteer departments.
The training should be based several factors. These include the overall experience level of participants, the frequency of member turnover, and the type of call load the department has.

This week’s drill addresses some of the above issues by citing an example of a volunteer fire department which has seen a recent influx of new members, accompanied by the departure of many of its veterans. This influx of new members means drills at this company must start out at a basic level. Author Bill Pressler offers potential topics to be covered and how to develop your drill schedule.

Click HERE for this week’s drill.

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