Following your orientation training courses you can be enrolled in Firefighter I and Firefighter II classes. These classes are academically and physically challenging. In addition to being physically fit, students must be prepared to demonstrate proficient skills in English, physics, chemistry and mathematics. Our volunteer firefighters are expected to be well-rounded expert problem solvers; effective communication and social skills are critical in assisting the diverse communities we serve as well as mitigating the technical emergency situations we deal with on a daily basis.
The primary objective for the Firefighter I and Firefighter II courses is to fully prepare a student to ride in a minimum staffing capacity. Students passing these courses will be able to: quickly identify fire-behavior; choose the correct type of hose-line; utilize special nozzle patterns for effective fire suppression; understand basic building construction; utilize breathing apparatus in normal and emergency modes; identify correct ladder placement; identify types of fire; tie multiple types of knots for fire-ground applications; execute bail out and self/buddy extrication procedures; don full structural firefighting ensemble (including breathing apparatus) within 90 seconds; conduct victim searches; and properly ventilate a structure fire. Both of these classes together make up take about 260 instructional hours and are usually completed within 7 months. All firefighting related classes hosted at the Montgomery County Public Service Training Academy are taught by Maryland Fire-Rescue Institute instructors; these classes can help contribute to a fire/rescue related degree at University of Maryland as well as Montgomery College.
You have the option of continuing your fire suppression and rescue training beyond the Firefighter II level. Firefighters have the option of enrolling in: Strategies and Tactics; Rescue Technician; Aerial Apparatus Truck Company Operations; Pumps and Hydraulics Operations; Instructor I; Instructor II; Fire Officer I; Fire Officer II; Fire Officer II; Fire Officer IV; Wild land Firefighting; Emergency Services Structure Collapse; Engine Company Fire ground Operations; Emergency Vehicle Operator; Firefighter Survival and Rescue; HAZMAT Operations; HAZMAT Technician; Hazmat On-Scene Incident Commander; Incident Command for Highrise Operations; Structural Collapse Technician; Incident Command for Structure Collapse Incidents; Incident Safety officer; Swift Water Rescue Basic and Advanced; as well as Vehicle and Machinery Extrication.