Welcome to the Hillsborough Township Volunteer Fire Company #3 junior firefighter page! My name is Michael Lemonie, a firefighter with Station 38. In October of 2010, I joined Hillsborough Fire Company #3 as a junior firefighter. I originally joined the fire service to gain some volunteering experience, however I quickly fell in love with giving back to my community that I continue to serve Hillsborough today. In December of 2011, I graduated Firefighter 1 fire school at the Somerset County Emergency Services Training Academy and was then voted in as a full time member of Station 38. A large part of my success at the academy was due to the prior knowledge and hands on experience I received as a junior firefighter with Station 38.
During my time in the junior firefighter program, I learned a great amount of valuable information. Each Monday evening at the firehouse consists of a business meeting, a work detail (where we wash the fire trucks and check all equipment on the trucks to ensure they are in proper, working condition), or a drill. Junior firefighters are highly encouraged to attend as many Mondays as possible. Any and every firefighter at Station 38 made me feel welcomed and always offered a helping hand by explaining anything I was confused about.
Aside from Monday nights, every Sunday afternoon junior firefighters meet with a few senior firefighters at the firehouse and learn about each truck and its specific function – where and what tools are used for certain operations, the different sizes and uses of hose lines, how to properly don fire gear and air packs, and important skills and techniques used in different scenarios. This is a much better one on one opportunity for the junior firefighters to learn from experienced firefighters. Then, on Monday evenings, they can apply this new knowledge. One of the first drills I attended at the academy was a forcible entry drill, where we use certain tools to gain access into buildings, leaving the least amount of damage to the door or entrance. The previous day at the firehouse, our lieutenant went over how the irons, which consist of an axe and halligan tool, can be use in different scenarios, and one of them was gaining access around a locked door. With the experience learned the previous day, the drill at the academy was a huge success.
Once accepted by membership, each junior firefighter is given their own pager and a full set of turnout gear, which includes a helmet, turnout jacket, bunker pants, boots, gloves and a hood. With this, juniors can respond to any fire call that is in Hillsborough. They may not, however, operate any power tools, hand lines, or enter any unsafe or hazardous environment on scene, unless a senior member deems it safe and accompanies them to show them what exactly caused the incident.
As a junior firefighter you are a large asset to any fire scene. You may be asked to assist firefighters in grabbing certain tools, flaking out hose line, connecting hose lines to fire hydrants, breaking down hose lines, and cleaning up scenes. After working at a structure fire, a firefighter can be exhausted and will appreciate a junior being on scene to help them. Also, all of the knowledge and hands on training received as a junior firefighter will give you a great advantage in fire school.
Are you interested in joining the junior firefighter program at Hillsborough Township Volunteer Fire Company #3? Anyone between the ages of 16-18 is encouraged to join! Stop by Station 38 at 324 Woods Road any Monday at 7:30pm or call us at (908) 359-3333 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to having you help in providing a comprehensive emergency service designed to enhance our community through fire prevention, public education, and emergency response. At Station 38, we are dedicated to protecting life, property, and the environment. Come join us!