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Press release from the Arcata Fire Protection District:

The Arcata Fire Protection District (AFPD) has doubled the opportunities for community residents and college students to volunteer with the District. A new civilian program called the Volunteer Logistics Unit, or "VLU", will be launched this fall to complement the District's ongoing and strong group of volunteer firefighters.

Both programs, volunteer firefighting and the new VLU, are included in the District's current "Join Our Team" volunteer recruitment campaign, which culminates with a free "Information Night", slated for 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, August 28, at the downtown Arcata fire station, 631 9thavailable at the Information Night, or online at arcatafire.org. Applicants must be 18 years or older, and available to serve the communities of Arcata, McKinleyville, Bayside, and Manila. Completed applications must be received at the Arcata Station by Friday, September 5th.

"The new Volunteer Logistics Unit opens up opportunities for community members to volunteer with the Fire District without requiring them to climb ladders or fight fires," said Battalion Chief Sean Campbell, who oversees the District's volunteer programs. "Members of the VLU will be an incredible resource to help support emergency response as well as our training operations." Chief Campbell explained that the District will train all new members of the VLU in such assignments as refilling expended air bottles for firefighters' breathing apparatus, directing traffic or controlling a perimeter, providing assistance at an incident command post, and operating a two-way radio.


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Central to the success of the new program will be the participation of veteran Arcata volunteer firefighters who have transitioned out of most front-line firefighting and rescue responsibilities but who continue to serve the District through the VLU.

In addition to seeking applicants for the VLU, the District's "Join Our Team" recruitment campaign encourages interested persons to apply to become a volunteer firefighter with Arcata Fire. In exchange for a three-year commitment, successful applicants receive a medical exam, extensive training, uniforms and equipment without charge. Volunteer firefighters train weekly and are expected to staff an engine at a District fire station for 12 to 24 hours a month, as well as to respond to some emergency situations. Although volunteer firefighters do not receive a salary, they may be eligible for reimbursements of personal expenses related to certain types of calls and training.