St. Maries Fire Protection District Information Sheet
The Harrison Chamber of Commerce in Harrison, Idaho, has partnered with the St. Maries Fire Protective District to jointly observe the town's 100 Year Fire Commemoration and the District's 30th anniversary.
2017 marks thirty years of service to the community by volunteers of the SMFPD. It is also the 100th year since Harrison, once a prosperous mill town on the banks of Lake Coeur d'Alene, succumbed to a disastrous fire. We are taking this opportunity to highlight the importance and needs of our rural volunteer fire department.
Volunteer Firefighters are Always in Demand
Being a volunteer firefighter requires time, effort, dedication, and a significant commitment. All members of the community, from the youngest to the oldest, depend on their volunteer firefighters for help during times of emergency.
Satisfaction and Incentives
It can be tough, but the benefits are well worth it. Besides the feeling of satisfaction of saving lives and being a valued member of the community, volunteer firefighters cultivate practical skills, build lasting friendships, and qualify for scholastic grants and other incentives. Adult training for beginning firefighters requires about 16 hours a month, and includes structure fires, wild land fires, vehicle extrication, ice rescue, medical calls, and more.
District Covers Large Rural Area
Forty volunteers and three paid staff of the St. Maries Fire Protection District protect the lives and property of about 4,500 citizens (and swarms of visitors during peak seasons) in an area of 2,380 miles. The rural and mountainous region lies along the lower portion of Lake Coeur d'Alene and the waterways that feed it. Only 80 square miles of the district is funded by local taxes. The remaining 2,300 miles are served by SMFPD because there is no other agency equipped to do so.
Junior Fire Fighter Program
The St. Maries Fire Protection District offers a Junior Firefighter training program for youth between the ages of 16 and 18 from the Kootenai and St. Maries school districts. There are currently eight junior firefighters in training, who will qualify to go on calls with the adults if they successfully complete the program. Once juniors complete the course they become eligible to participate in the adult training program.
For details about junior and adult volunteer firefighting opportunities call headquarters at Fire Station 1 in St. Maries, at 208-245-5253 during business hours.
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