Alhambra Fire Department Recruit Academy program prepares future firefighters

By Jewelyn Co

Recruits Tanner McDaniel, Marcus Bennett, and Garrett Gomez participate in an auto extrication drill.

The Alhambra Fire Department Recruit Academy Program is a four-week training course for recruits who are in pursuit of a career in the fire services. The program is offered by the Alhambra Fire Department. Selection is based on interviews, skilled assessment, and achievement of a high score level in written examination.

Most recruits have the opportunity to become cadets and get hired by the Alhambra
Fire Department, yet some are cadets for years and are required to take tests and pass the recruit training. Training and classes are held daily at the Alhambra Fire Department Training facility, 911 S. New Ave., with a routine of lineup and inspection, practice lessons, and intense practice drills, such as laying hose, handling equipment, fire ground survival, ladders, and auto extrication scenarios.

Recruits are taught to observe the scene, check the environment and the vehicle situation, and to determine how many patients are involved. The recruits learn to prepare the appropriate tools and get situated within all types of scenes. “The recruits are put in the field of a four-week training program, where a variety of training is practiced to get them prepared for real life scenarios,” said Alhambra Fire Department Captain Lawrence Ramirez. “I am looking forward to our recruits getting their experiences, skills, and careers going. It is like passing on the torch where we provide them with our knowledge and experiences, and they continue on with these experiences.”

Alhambra Fire Department recruits Tanner McDaniel, 23, Garrett Gomez, 26, and Marcus Bennett, 31, completed their training program Sept. 28. They will move to a probationary period of 17 months that will determine if they will be hired as firefighters. “My father was a firefighter, and I grew up in the fire station with him,” said Mr. McDaniel. “I started as an explorer when I was 12 years old. Then I went to fire academy right after high school, and I stayed as a cadet in Alhambra because this is something I knew I wanted to do.”

They have served as each other’s motivation, learned strengths and weaknesses, and shared their knowledge with each other during the program.

“We have become more of a family, and we have learned to work as a team,” Mr. Gomez said.

“The balance of our duties in the program and time with family has been a challenge,” Mr. Bennett said. “I am very grateful for the support I receive from my family.”

The recruits have demonstrated they are well prepared to continue to their next level of the course. “I’m proud of our recruits,” Alhambra Fire Department Battalion Chief Tom Phelps said. “I have faith they will successfully complete the program and move on and advance their careers as firefighters. They are good individuals who have a lot to offer.”

For more information on the Alhambra Fire Department Recruit Academy Program, visit http://cityofalhambra.org.


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Jan 2022


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