Edwin Winslow Jr., Captain
First every Fire Police Officer is an active and qualified firefighter, then secondly they are a Fire Police Officer. This is an important role with our volunteer fire departments, where manpower may be minimal during an alarm and the need is imminent to make rescue, render first- aid, supress a fire, then to act as a policeman. Fire Police must also take an oath of office, be sworn in by a Judge or Justice of the Peace, be registered with their Townships, and are mandated by law to be registered as a New York State Peace Officer. In order to accomplish all of this they must complete and be certified from the New York State Academy of Fire Science and New York State Office of Fire Control and Prevention in both firefighter and Fire Police courses. The main function of a Fire Police Squad within the fire department is to give that department a protection of safety while at an emergency scene. The Fire Police Officer not only renders protection to the emergency personnel, but to their vehicles and equipment. Spectators will crowd around equipment and prevent work from getting done effectively, or prevent valuable equipment from reaching the scene in a timely manner, or hamper operations in general. Fire Police will try to control the actions of a crowd, keep them at a safe distance for everyone’s safety. Who knows what hidden danger lies at the scene; from hidden explosions, toxic fumes, deadly chemicals unseen and undetected upon first discovery of an emergency. Fire Police control the traffic flow to assure emergency vehicles get a quick safe entrance and egress to and from the incident. They may halt traffic, block a road off, detour to another direction due to the situation and dangers involved. Space must be maintained for other emergency mutual aid traffic, tankers or Police to the scene. Fire Police will protect victims, their valuables and property, and preserve evidence at the scene. If a victim needs medical attention, contain spectators and show respect of the patient’s modesty and privacy at such times of pain and agony. Offer every one the same treatment and respect as you would expect to be treated if it were you. An essential task for the prevention and control during a situation is to avoid another emergency. Fire Police are New York State Peace Officers and can make arrests if need be at a scene.