Useful Data on Starling Volunteer School
The Rockland County Volunteer Firemen’s Association, comprising a group of towns near the west bank of the Hudson river in New York, has gained a great deal of information on firemen’s school since they organized a course of instruction for their members.
The selection of an officer has been found to be important. At first the association wanted to employ two men, one to teach evolutions and one for the lectures.
Luckily, a man was found who could care for both fields. He had to be sympathetic with volunteer problems and one who could adjust himself to local conditions.
The original school organization plan was to have the same work given on the same day in three of four large villages. This was found to be impracticable owing to the time required for evolutions and to the fact that drills did not start early Chairman, Training Committee enough to make use of the extra daylight saving hours.
The drill sessions were therefore planned for a whole day. and each time in a different village. Each community had a chance to see the work gone over completely about four times. Lectures were held in the various village public schools in the evenings.
The average attendance was not large—the minimum was fifteen and the maximum was thirty-five. The school did not have the support that it warranted. The younger element found other diversions in the evening more to their liking.
There have been many direct results from the school. Members of one engine company have abandoned their old methods of selecting officers by ballot and now pick them according to the men’s ability. Officers of other companies are passing on the information that they received to members of their units.
Where companies in one county have some agreement whereby they will cooperate in “covering in,” it is necessary that one instructor will be employed in giving technical information to all units. Then when one company is protecting property temporarily in another section, the men will be trained to work in harmony.
The Rockland County school has not been a financial success. To others who may contemplate such an undertaking, the suggestion is made that tuition fees be fixed to cover all incidental expenses, or if based on the instructor’s expenses only, then ro part should be spent for incidentals. An association should be willing to make a generous contribution to such an enterprise and to charge it to advertising.
New Pumper Delivered to Jamestown, N. Y.—A 1,000-gal lon Ahrens-Fox pumper has been placed in service at No. 2 station, Jamestown, N. Y.
John G. Gamber to Give Siren as Prize—John G. Gamber, former fire marshal of Illinois, has offered a siren for a prize to the chief having the most men attending the fourth annual short fire-fighters course at the University of Illinois.
Drill Tower Erected for School Course—Contracts have been let for the construction of a drill tower to be used in training students at the short course for firemen to be held at the University of Illinois, June 19-22.
Pearl Smith Still in Hospital—Pearl Smith, active worker in the Illinois Firemen’s Association, is still in the Barnes Hospital, St. Louis, where he has been confined for the past several months. He is getting along as well as can be expected.