Phillipston firefighter among graduates of State Training Class #78

  • Phillipston Fire Chief Jeffrey Parker, left, Firefighter Benjamin Bancroft, Cap. John Seamon, Lt. Bill Clayton. Submitted photo

  • From left — Phillipston Fire Chief Jeffrey Parker, Firefighter Benjamin Bancroft, State Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey. —Submitted photo

  • Phillipston Fire Chief Jeffrey Parker, Firefighter Benjamin Bancroft, Captain John Seamon, Lt. Bill Clayton. —Submitted photo

Published: 11/7/2019 9:50:26 PM
Modified: 11/7/2019 9:50:15 PM

PHILLIPSTON – Phillipston firefighter Benjamin “Ben” Bancroft graduated with the Call/Volunteer Recruit Firefighter Training Class No. 78 in a ceremony held at the Department of Fire Services in Stow on Oct. 28.

State Fire Marshal Peter J. Ostroskey and Massachusetts Firefighting Academy Deputy Director Joseph Klucznik presented certificates of completion to 36 graduates from 21 fire departments.

The eight female and 28 male graduates represent the 21 fire departments of Ashburnham, Ashby, Berlin, Bolton, Carlisle, Harvard, Leicester, Mendon, Middleton, Northborough, Northbridge, Paxton, Pepperell, Phillipston, Rutland, Townsend, Tyngsborough, Webster, Westminster, Weston, and Winchendon. This was the highest number of women graduating in one class from this program.

Today’s firefighters do far more than fight fires. They are the first called to respond to chemical and environmental emergencies, ranging from the suspected presence of carbon monoxide to a gas leak. They may be called to rescue a child who has fallen through the ice or who has locked himself in a bathroom. They rescue people from stalled elevators and those trapped in vehicle crashes. They test and maintain their equipment, ranging from self-contained breathing apparatus to hydrants, hoses, power tools, and vehicles.

In this Massachusetts Firefighting Academy program, they learn all these skills and more from certified fire instructors who are also experienced firefighters. Students learn all the basic skills they need to respond to fires, to contain and to control them. They also receive training in public fire education, hazardous material incident mitigation, flammable liquids, stress management, firefighter self-rescue, and vehicle extrication.

The intensive program includes classroom instruction, physical fitness training, firefighter skills training and live firefighting practice.

The Call/Volunteer Firefighter Recruit Training program delivers a standard recruit training curriculum, meeting national standards, on nights and weekends to accommodate the schedule of firefighters in suburban and rural areas.

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