After fire school, I wanted to continue my in-house training and get bucket-qualified on our Tower which reaches 95 feet off the ground. Our company began the training for several of us who are eligible. Most of our senior members are already qualified and they have encouraged us along the way.
One requirement that initially made us nervous is climbing the ladder up and down in full gear. We practiced it because there is a chance that we may climb to rotate out firefighters. I preferred climbing up rather than climbing down.
Before we climbed the ladder, our fellow firefighters wished us luck. When we climbed down after we completed the task, each firefighter said good job. That’s what I like about the crew. Encouragement goes a long way. During fire school at the Delaware County Emergency Services Training School, we received positive reinforcement from the instructors.
“Give praise,” authors Chip R. Bell and Ron Zemke said, “and give it generously.”
All of us operated the controls in the bucket during a few training nights with a firefighter overseeing our progress. It felt like we operated the bucket like an amusement ride. Between the enjoyable view and the firefighters who supervised us and helped us stay focused, that made me less nervous as we did this. Their crucial role helped during the times that the movement of the bucket got to me. I plan to keep practicing to become familiar with the controls and terminology to extend the ladder forward and retract it back, raise and lower, and rotate it left and right, as well as how to flow water.
|Ginger Rae Dunbar and several other firefighters are training on the Tower to get bucket-qualified, learning to use the controls and flow water during drill nights.|