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Pros And Cons Of An Engineer Postion ?

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  • #16
    Though paid guys usually look at volunteers as a bunch of yahoos racing to be first at the station so they can drive,my old volunteer department would have a regular driver engineer assigned at each station unless he was at work or doing family things to keep a happy home.
    If the regular engineer couldn't make it,there were plenty of people,officers and not who were qualified to drive and run the truck.If not,we might be in deep kimchi as the guy appointed on the fly might have passed the state pump operator's course but have no driving time,which makes for an interesting ride to the call(been that guy and will wait for the EVOC cert)
    Even though our Chief Engineer has never packed up in 25 years except to take some probie into a trainer as a buddy,it isn't retiring in place,or for those that can't do anything else.Not the way he does it.
    I think it's best to have someone who's been on a hose a few times before turning them loose on a pump panel without a leash, license or adult supervision.That way,they'll know why a team would be wanting the pressure raised or lowered or any of the myriad things an engineer does.
    Not only that,he knows that rig inside and out and will teach you if you ask.And God help the stand in driver that puts a scratch on his baby.You'd rather explain it to the Chief and Board of Trustees,that's all I'm saying.

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    • #17
      One thing to consider is that if one doesn't need to promote to Engineer before your 1st Line officer position then you can and will create pay compression issues.

      My current dept only has firemen and bosses, there is loosely structured flexible method that more or less means the most senior men in the company get the seat if they are trained chaufffeurs.

      FTM-PTB

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      • #18
        [QUOTE=johnny46;754970]It wouldn't be a dead end ay more than the FF position./QUOTE]

        I mention the dead end issue because that is what the largest dept in our area-Detroit- does, and it gets referenced regularly here during the discussion. As I understand it, they have a choice to make, driver (FEO) or Sgt, once they become an FEO they cannot be promoted out of it.

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        • #19
          Hey if its a promotion - go for it. But I think- at least around here that title is a thing of the past. The engineer title came from the days of steam engines when you needed a engineer to ensure the safety of the men around the steam boiler. Although that was before my time.

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          • #20
            Not sure exactly how it works for the County, but I've noticed that its the same guys who drive the Engine for each shift. So I would hazard a fairly decent guess that is a worked up position here. I know the basic training requirements that go into being the Engine Driver - and the career drivers all seem to have "Technican" on their shirts.

            Back at Malahat VFD, I was the unit Engineer and the Engine driver. Duties for me consisted mostly of ensuring all the maintenance schedules for all electric or mechanical equipment was up to date. Primarily that meant getting the trucks in for their bi-annual safety inspections and any maint on all small engines.

            Personally, I think its a good idea to have a select number of folks who regularly drive. That way the driver does get to know the gear the truck carries and knows all its noises and characteristics. Therefore, hopefully knowing when something is "Not Right" before it becomes a catastrophic failure at a crucial time.
            If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

            "I may be slow, but my work is poor." Chief Dave Balding, MVFD

            "Its not Rocket Science. Just use a LITTLE imagination." (Me)

            Get it up. Get it on. Get it done!

            impossible solved cotidie. miracles postulo viginti - quattuor hora animadverto

            IACOJ member: Cheers, Play safe y'all.

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            • #21
              Its not a promotion for us, but if you sit in the seat you get an extra $.75 per hour. Compensation for the added responsibility of the rig and all the equipment.

              We do have a training program for each of the different rigs, and the senior man on the crew is usually the primary engineer for that rig.

              BTW, our drivers dont "bump-up" if the CO is off. Thats an acting officers position which pays an extra $1.00 an hour and is a seperate set of qualifications and training then engineer.
              Fire Marshal/Safety Officer

              IAAI-NFPA-IAFC/VCOS-Retired IAFF

              "No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government"
              RUSH-Tom Sawyer

              Success is when skill meets opportunity
              Failure is when fantasy meets reality

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              • #22
                my volunteer department does not have a title for the position other than "driver". however, since our stations are not staffed 24/7, the driver is usually the first person who gets to the station. but if there are several of us at the station we just ask who wants to drive that night. the paid department here however does not a have the title "driver" or "engineer" in the ranks. there the rank of lieutenant is the driver and pump operator. this is how many departments in mississippi work. you have the rank of firefighter, then lieutenant(driver/pump ops.) and then the captain(engine/truck officer).

                i have only been a driver for a short time, but i love it. i dont get to fight fires that much, but i just love the possition. i didnt think i would be very good at it at first, but one i started driver training i was hooked. i just like going down the streets with lights and sirens and then getting on scene and working the engine. some guys on my department however hate driving. its all in what you make it. i have also known many guys on the career department make it to driver and stay there for the rest of their career.
                2009 Warren County Firefighter of the Year

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                • #23
                  We never subscibed to this and when we had them we pretty much did the "Bonsey" thing. The thing I did not understand about this from a POC/Volly perspective is what do you do if there are none available ? Seems silly to me. Our local "big city" has a position called "First Driver" but I am not 100% sure how they work it there. '77's department still does this I think and for them it is mostly about maitenance issues more than anything, IIRC.
                  IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
                  Pardon me sir.. .....but I believe we are all over here !
                  ATTENTION ALL SHOPPERS: Will the dead horse please report to the forums.(thanks Motown)
                  RAY WAS HERE 08/28/05
                  LETHA' FOREVA' ! 010607
                  I'm sorry, I haven't been paying much attention for the last 3 hours.....what were we discussing?
                  "but I guarentee you I will FF your arse off" from>
                  http://www.firehouse.com/forums/show...60#post1137060post 115

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