Volunteers sponsor firemanship merit badge course
VOLUNTEER FIREMEN are always among the more dedicated members of any community, but the members of the Ideal Volunteer Fire Company, Johnstown, Pa., went even further in their dedication by sponsoring a Firemanship Merit Badge course for the scouts of a local council. Under the supervision of Fire Chief Henry Zuccolotto and vice-president Ira Shoff scouts of the Admiral Robert E. Perry Council earned their badges by attending a three-session course in fire lighting and fire prevention.
At the first session, the scouts watched the fire fighters respond to and extinguish a demonstration fire in a pile of rubber tires and saw-mill slabs, which was touched off in a field at Fun City Park. The firemen stretched and operated two lines, using masks, and making all operations as realistic as possible. Thomas Walko, Pennsylvania State Fire School instructor explained the fire fighting procedures as the operations on the field progressed.
Answering the alarm with the pumper were the company squad truck and the ambulance. Through the courtesy of the Seagrave Company a 100-foot aerial truck was detoured to Johnstown, while en route to New Haven, Conn, for delivery. After the fire demonstration, Chief Zuccolotto boarded Ideal’s pumper and answered questions concerning its operation. Leonard Whiting, Seagrave service representative, did the same for the aerial ladder.
The second session included classes in home fire prevention, escape procedures, and the operations of paid and volunteer fire departments. The third and final session found the scouts being instructed in the use of first-aid fire extinguishers, and the ropes and knots used by firemen.
The course was considered highly successful by all, and plans call for carrying it into the future on a permanent basis. The purpose of the Ideal firemen in sponsoring the course was to acquaint the boys with fire fighting in general and its importance to the community. However, the firemen are convinced that the boys will take the message of fire protection and fire prevention home to their parents and neighbors.