What Fuels Your Fire?

West Roane County Volunteer Fire Department
News - January 6, 2008

Volunteer Julie Dvorak, 2007 Firefighter of the Year, shown with her award trophy
2007 FireFighter of the Year Julie Dvorak
holds her award outside Station #1;
click to zoom (387kb)

WRCVFD hopes to receive a 2008 Polaris Ranger 6x6 like this one from USSTC
WRCVFD hopes to receive a
2008 Polaris Ranger 6x6
like this one from USSTC;
click to learn more.

1. WRCVFD Volunteer Recognition Dinner: FireFighters Honored
2. WRCVFD Applies for 2008 USSTC Operation Ranger Grant
3. Coming Soon: January 18, 2008 Registration Deadline for 2008 Smoky Mountain Weekend Training Conference
4. New Photos of Safety Day, Fire Stations, and Recognition Dinner Available in Photos section
5. Online Courses Completed

  • Volunteer Recognition Dinner 2007: FireFighters Honored

    January 5, 2007: The annual WRCVFD Volunteer Recognition Dinner was held on Thursday evening, December 13, 2007 in Station #1 on Pumphouse Road, Rockwood. Festivities started at 7 PM and ran all evening. Volunteers made fried turkey, smoked turkey, and many other delicious dishes that filled the buffet tables. The organization had a record turn-out; the fire hall was full, all the chairs and plates were taken, and the feast had no leftovers. Decorations, by volunteers Tom van Dalen, Kate Antone, and helpers, were impressive. The poinsettas, lights, tree, candle centerpieces, and plates warmly enlivened this year's blue-and-silver wintry snowman theme. Santa attended, and gave each child safety-related presents, including LED flashlights and donated colorful fleece blankets.

    Along with the festive fellowship, the dinner was business too; FireFighters and First Responders were honored. FireFighter of the Year for 2007 Julie Dvorak was formally given her award. According to Chief Redwine, factors in her selection were her high number of responses, training events attended, and her extensive helping with development and public education events.

    When asked for comments, Julie said, I want to thank my husband and Charlie Redwine and Clint and Gary Riggs and Charlie Mead and the entire department because if it weren't for all of them I wouldn't be where I am today. Everyone has been so wonderful and supportive.

    Other volunteers were recognized for achieving training and certifications:

    • Chris Jones recently completed Paramedic School. He now is a licensed Paramedic, State Certified.
    • Clint Redwine recently became Firefighter Level 1, State Certified.
    • The following firefighters completed Emergency Medical Responder (First Responder) training. All have passed the state testing and the National Registry Test:
      • Julie Dvorak;
      • Stephen Koren;
      • Victor Zammit;
      • Eric Cox.

    We are still trying to reach some of these volunteers for comment—they are a busy group!—but were able to reach a few so far.

    Steve Koren at 72 is the oldest of the current graduates. Steve comments about the First Responder training,

    I'm kind of new to the area. I was not aware of the Volunteer Fire Department and the First Responder services until I moved to Roane County. The response time here is just excellent, as is the EMS.

    I'm not sure how many people in the area realize how much work the Fire Department does with respect to medical calls. They are a very important part of what the Department does.

    I saw what they were doing, and I'm not the youngest guy in the world, but I thought, I could do that. I would encourage other people to do the same. There is a lot of medical stuff you have to know. It is very intense. They make sure we are well trained. I thought it was very very interesting. It is something I wanted to know.

    There is what they call the Chain of Survival. The First Responder is the first link in the chain. Our job is to do whatever it takes to care for the patients, to maintain the patients until they get to a medical facility.

    Victor Zammit, 66, commented,It was an intensive course and I am glad I took it. The four of us are glad we stuck it out. It is rewarding to know I finished something like that. It was a long course, but it was worth it.

    Chief Redwine said, These certifications are not easy to get. Each takes many hours of dedication and hard work. Chief Redwine and all of West Roane Volunteer Fire Department extend heartfelt thanks to all these fine volunteers for their excellent service to our department and our community.

    Photos of the dinner are now available in the Photos section.

Recognition Dinner at Station #1 - Click to zoom (393kb)
Recognition Dinner at Station #1;
click to zoom (231kb)
Honoring the volunteers - Click to zoom (251kb)
Honoring the volunteers;
click to zoom (251kb)

  • WRCVFD Applies for 2008 USSTC Operation Ranger Grant

    January 5, 2008: The U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company (USSTC) has a generous yearly grant program, Operation Ranger. For 2008, USSTC hopes to award at least 60 Polaris Ranger 6x6 utility vehicles to deserving organizations.

    WRCVFD learned about this outstanding corporate program from the December 5, 2007 newsletter of the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) in mid-December 2007, just in time for the December 28 Operation Ranger 2008 application deadline. Many WRCVFD volunteers helped gather and prepare data for the 21-page application, which was mailed in time despite the holiday season.

    As part of the fact-finding process one volunteer wrote a map analysis program in PHP and Microsoft Excel that determined the extent of forest and grassland cover in the Department's fire district using data from the United States Geological Service (USGS): 69% forest, 21% grassland (including hay fields), and 10% roads and other built-up, non-forest, non-grassland areas.

    WRCVFD had at least 33 incidents in 2005-2007 in which a capable off-road utility vehicle would have been very helpful, including search and rescue operations, brushfires (wildland fires), and one structure fire.

    If the grant application is accepted, WRCVFD plans to use the Polaris primarily for firefighting and search and rescue service calls. The Polaris Ranger 6x6 2008 is well-suited for these uses, since it has a top speed of 44 mph, a payload of 1750 pounds, on-demand true 6-wheel drive, independent center suspension, seating for 3, 7.2-inch ground clearance, and a 1-ton towing capacity.

Relief map of fire district and Rockwood showing USGS data
Relief map of fire district and Rockwood
showing USGS data
Map of fire district and Rockwood showing USGS forest cover data in green
Map of fire district and Rockwood showing
USGS forest cover data in green

  • Coming Soon: January 18, 2008 Registration Deadline for 2008 Smoky Mountain Weekend Training Conference

    January 5, 2008: The registration deadline is fast approaching for the 10th Annual Smoky Mountain Weekend Training Conference. Sponsored by the Sevier County Fire Chiefs' Association (SCFCA) and the Sevier County Training Officers' Association (SCTOA), the Training Conference will be held Saturday and Sunday, March 1 and 2, 2008, at the Sevier County High School in Sevier County, Tennessee.

    Fifty-three different classes will be offered. The classes vary in length between 7.5 hours and 16 bours. A list of classes is available in our 2008 Training Calendar or in the registration packet.

    The 2008 Smoky Mountain Weekend Training Conference Registration Packet is now available as a 224kb Adobe PDF file (Get Adobe Reader). The registration packet can be found in our Training Calendar Archives section or directly at http://www.westroane.com/content/documents/SMW_Packet_2008.pdf, and is also available at tnsmokediver.com.

    Out-of-state students are being accepted this year, so send in your registration forms as soon as possible.

    Secretary Ogle of the Sevier County Fire Chiefs' Association (SCFCA), says, We hope to see you at our conference.

    You should register as soon as possible, but you must pre-register by January 18, 2008, by mailing the complete registration form with your check made payable to: Sevier County Fire Chiefs Association. You may contact the SCFCA by phone at (865) 654-5810 or by fax at (865) 428-1838.

  • Online Courses Completed

    Volunteer C. Sloan completed the following short courses:

    • Radiation Safety Awareness from Michigan State University School of Criminal Justice.
    • National Incident Management System (NIMS) Resource Management (IS-703) and NIMS Public Information Systems (IS-702), completing the 3-course FEM 151 sequence; Radiological Emergency Response (IS-00301, FEM 102); Decision Making and Problem Solving (IS-241, FEM 133); Introduction to the Public Assistance Process (IS-630, FEM 126); Effective Communication (IS-00242, FEM 134); and Developing and Managing Volunteers (IS-244, FEM 135), all from FEMA Emergency Management Institute for college credit.
    • IRS - Section 508 for Software Development from the General Services Administration at Section508.gov. Section 508 refers to the national requirements for accessibility in communications. WRCVFD strives to maintain an accessible web site according to both Section 508 and W3C standards.

    Information on online courses related to emergency services can be found on the Online Training section of this web site.

Firefighter of the Year Julie Dvorak in a 2007 fire safety poster
Firefighter of the Year Julie Dvorak
in a WRCVFD 2007 fire safety poster;
click to zoom to PDF (210kb, 2400x1600)

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