Firefighting recruits in Comox must survive code three grind

Nine new recruits faced a physical challenge earlier this month to see not who could lift the most or run the fastest.

THE COMOX FIRE Department has a training facility that attracts experienced firefighters

Nine new recruits faced a physical challenge earlier this month to see not who could lift the most or run the fastest, but ultimately who could help those in need.

The nine recruits are working their way through the intensive training required to be a volunteer, on-call firefighter for the Comox Fire Department, explained Fire Chief Gord Schreiner.

The recruits must past the physical ‘code three grind’ test to continue with training, said Schreiner.

“This year, we had 24 applicants, which is a fair number, and we had nine candidates selected to perform the physical challenge,” he noted, and added the recruits now have to train for anywhere between another three months to a year before they can assist on a fire.

Schreiner said he credits the excellent training facility on site at the fire hall, which is used not only by local firefighters, but those from across the Island and province to attract volunteers.

Although it is challenging to find people to cover the Monday-to-Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. shift, Schreiner noted the department does offer flexibility, particularly for those working shift work.

He added he looks for three distinct qualities in individuals interested in joining: “You must be physically fit, highly dedicated and highly motivated.”

Schreiner explained volunteers must commit to a two-house Tuesday night practice, but the timing can be somewhat flexible for those who have to work. Once a month, new recruits also have to attend one Saturday training day.

Although the overall training takes about a year, Schreiner said some of the recruits can respond to medical emergencies within three months, depending on their background. Out of the current group of recruits, he noted five have had prior training and two had training as military firefighters.

With more than $1 million invested in their training facility, Schreiner said he’s “very proud” of the site Comox has to offer.

“We’ve got everything you need to train a firefighter on site,” he noted, and added they are one of two facilities on the Island and one of four within the province to have a live fire building.

“We’ve had firefighters from Chetwynd, Bowen Island and we’ve got career firefighters from Victoria coming up to train,” he said, and explained Comox has five full-time instructors, which keeps the facility to capacity nearly every weekend.

For more information on the department or to volunteer, visit www.comox.ca/hall/departments/fire.

photos@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Just Posted

Merville resident looking for help to name original settler families

Janice Isenor is hoping to figure out which families settled where in Merville 100 years ago

Cultural sharing for Comox Valley School District song unveiling

After nearly a year in the making, a special gift was presented… Continue reading

Best of World Community Film Fest screens Tuesday

The votes are in from the recent World Community Film Festival and… Continue reading

Union Bay Improvement District board apologizes to trustee; deadline remains for other demands

UBID board complies with one of the demands of a letter threatening legal action

Valley’s Women’s Memorial March honours those missing and murdered

On Thursday morning shortly before noon, around 60 people gathered to honour… Continue reading

Snowy day in Courtenay

The Comox Valley received another snowfall overnight Friday. It may not last… Continue reading

Workshop with ‘accent reduction’ training cancelled at UBC

The workshop was cancelled the same day as an email was sent out to international students

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

Man in Vancouver Island hotel shooting pleads guilty to second-degree murder

Brandon Tyler Woody, from Victoria, to be sentenced in late March in B.C. Supreme Court

Judge rules Abbotsford home must be sold after son tries to evict mom

Mom to get back down payment and initial expenses

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Snow turns to slush, rain as it warms up across B.C.’s south coast

Some areas are already covered by more than half a metre of snow following three separate storms

Father to be charged with first-degree murder in Amber Alert case

11-year-old Riya Rajkumar was found dead in her father’s home in Brampton, Ontario

Most Read