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While attending the recent Essex Fire Department Pancake Breakfast and seeing the level of teamwork involved in preparing it for so many, I began to reflect on the extent of the commitment the department gives to the community in ways some people don’t realize.
Responding to structural and car fires is only part of their service. On a very regular basis, our firefighters are on the scene assisting with respiratory distress issues, extracting people from mangled cars, conducting search and rescue in the water and woods, blocking traffic to prevent further accidents during emergency procedures, helping EMTs move individuals from remote locations and/or down staircases to ambulances, detecting gas and carbon monoxide leaks, and handling other events involving hazardous materials.
Our firefighters are required to have training for situations they may face. Essex Fire Department can be proud that its firefighters are regularly given opportunities to train during controlled burns for that purpose and via courses offered at the fire academy.
For anyone who may still not realize it, these firefighters are unpaid volunteers, yet many nights when we are sound asleep, they jump up and rush out to answer a call.
Many, many thanks go to our Essex Fire Department and, indeed, to all the other volunteer fire departments in the area for their commitment to helping all of us when the need arises. Our lives and our taxes would be drastically affected without them!
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