Part of being a member of the Mt. Erie Fire Department is having a strong commitment to ongoing training. In order to perform our job safely and efficiently we have to learn new skills and then continue to practice them. Training never ends. It is key to saving lives and getting everyone home safely.

The department meets nearly every Monday from 7p-9p (often later) for regular training. In addition training is held several weekends a year (one or both days). Some of the training is optional, others is required. We cover topics and skills for safely handling medical emergencies, wildland fire, structure fire, and motor vehicle accidents.

All required and approved training costs are payed by the department.

Minimum Training Requirements

While all members are encouraged to get as much training as they can, we do have basic requirements that all members must meet in a timely manner.

  • First Aid for First Responders
  • CPR for First Responders
  • Blood Borne Pathogens
  • Incident Command

Medical Training

All members are required to have first responder-level first aid and CPR training. This is different than the first aid and CPR training given to the general public. We hold this training at least once per year and it may be available at a local department in the meantime. Non-EMTs must renew their certifications each year.

In addition, we encourage all members to get their EMT-B certification. EMT-B covers Basic Life Support (BLS) level skills for medical and trauma incidents. This is an intense 3-4 month long course given by the County EMS and is usually offered twice per year (depending on demand and instructor availability). Currently classes are held two nights a week, most Saturdays, and several Sundays during the class period. There are written and skills tests that must be passed in order to be certified by the State. This is a big commitment.

Once you receive your EMT-B you must attend ongoing training and complete online training sessions to maintain your certification.

Structure Fire Training

Much of our regular Monday night training is designed to improve our ability to handle structure fires. But the basic knowledge and skills is usually taught as some part of a fire academy. Depending on the number of people needing training and the availability of training in the county we will either hold an in-house academy or send you academy. The training will usually be two nights per week, plus Saturdays, for approximately 8-10 weeks. During this time you will learn the basics of structural firefighting (hoses, ladders, fire behavior, PPE, etc) and will get live fire training.

In addition you may choose to get your IFSAC Firefighter 1 (FF1) certification. You do this by challenging a skills and written test given by approved proctors. This may be at your fire academy or held at another department. You must be 18 in order to get your FF1. Having your FF1 is a requirement to fight mutual aid structure fires.

Wildland Training

The Mt. Erie Fire Department has a proud tradition of excellent wildland fire capabilities. We train to levels meeting or exceeding all other departments (payed and volunteer) in the county.

Red Card

The initial wildland fire training is called 'guard school' or 'red card'. It consists of classroom and outdoor skills training over two weekends. It is usually held in Spring or early Summer each year. This training is required for all department members and you will not be allowed to respond to a brush or wildland fire without it.

During subsequent years, all members will go through a half or full day refresher course to keep their skills fresh.


Approximately every-other year, red-carded members will have the opportunity to take a basic sawyer class. This two day class provides the skills necessary to maintain and operate a chainsaw safely. It covers creating fireline, swamping, and bucking. It does not cover felling.

Wildland Urban Interface

Much of our district (nearly all of it) lies in the wildland-urban interface, the area where natural areas meet structures. This two day class is held every-other year (opposite sawyer) and covers the strategies we will use to protect structures in our district during a wildland fire. While technically an officer-level class, all members are encourage to take this training at least once.

Incident Command

Driving and Pumping

The engineer is responsible for driving and pumping the apparatus.

Driver Training

Driving the apparatus requires training because they do not turn or stop like a normal passenger vehicle. We train drivers during maintenance night, en route to other drills and training, and by arrangement with a station officer. You must be 18, have a valid drivers license, a clean driving abstract, and auto insurance to drive department vehicles.


Anyone wishing to drive the apparatus must complete the EVIP (emergency vehicle incident prevention) requirements.

  • A one day EVIP class is required. After which a written test must be completed.
  • Driving rodeo (a driving course through which skills can be demonstrated).
  • Check-ride with one or more officers demonstrating driving ability on the road.

The rodeo and check-ride must be done for each type of apparatus (rescue/brush, tender, engine).

Pump Operations

You can get trained to run the pump in three ways:

  • We train on this during normal Monday drill nights (though the amount of time we can spend is limited)
  • Weekend/Evening training. Ask an officer and arrange a time to learn to run the pump.
  • There is a pump operations class held in the county about once per year. Notice will be sent out prior to the class.

Additional Training

If you have an idea for training that you would like to attend or think would be good for department members, please talk to your station officers.

Training Ideas