LAUDERDALE COUNTY, Ala. (WAFF) - Many of you at home rely on volunteer firefighters to come to your rescue during an emergency. However, nationwide there is a *shortage of firefighters willing to serve.
Many of you at home rely on volunteer firefighters to come to your rescue during an emergency. However, nationwide there is a *shortage of firefighters willing to serve.
Since there are not enough volunteers that mean public safety is in jeopardy.
The shortage of volunteer firefighters could mean the difference between life or death.
We have 11 people on our roster, but folks don’t volunteer how they used to when we first started doing this, said, Lonny Hayes President of the Board at Underwood-Petersville Volunteer Fire.
For many volunteer fire departments, it doesn’t matter how much equipment they have or how many stations are in the county.
If they don’t have the manpower- firefighters can’t keep you safe. The pager goes off when most of us are at work; there’s sometimes no one is available to go. When people call 9-1-1, they expect someone to be there, and that’s not the case we don’t have the manpower how we used too, said Hayes.
22-year-old Steven Carlton says it takes a special person to volunteer. The main thing the job offers is a good feeling that you’re helping the community. Most people my age say you do that for no money.
You go out and risk your life for a stranger knowing you can get on that truck and not come back home to your family, said, Steven Carlton Volunteer Firefighter.
Underwood- Petersville Volunteer Fire Department has had four new volunteers within the last year, and only one has stayed.
The lack of volunteers can also impact your pocketbook if you live in the county. Not enough volunteer firefighters will affect the cost of home insurance.
Anyone 18-years-old and up who is interested in becoming a volunteer firefighter is encouraged to contact their local volunteer fire department directly.