Become a Volunteer Firefighter
Joining the fire service is a very challenging endeavor. It is not for everyone. The commitment is extensive, but so are the rewards. If you believe that you have the discipline, the dedication, and the desire, then please read on.
Types of Volunteers
- The community member who lives near the fire station and wants to give back to her neighbors.
- The aspiring firefighter who wants training & experience, and has the goal of getting hired by a career fire department.
- The college student who seeks a career in medicine or public health and wants to gain real, hands-on experience at the front-lines of the US health care system.
- The professional who is established in her career, but wants to enjoy the camaraderie and excitement of the fire service.
Benefits of Volunteering
The experience gained by our volunteers is extensive. This is because Station 22 is situated in the middle of one of the most diverse communities in our nation, both economically and demographically.1 In our community, we have million dollar homes on one side and government subsidized housing on the other, three main routes between Renton & Seattle, and a section of I-5. With that, we get calls for service that span the entire range of a firefighter’s responsibilities. On any given night, you could be clearing a routine aid call and immediately get dispatched for a motor vehicle accident with multiple critical patients before you’ve even had a chance to put your aid kits back on the rig.
When it comes to actual firefighting experience, the volunteers at King 20 are not the hose-rollers or the clean-up crew. From the start of your very first shift, you’ll be riding in the jump seat, which means you’re on the nozzle and it’s your job to put the fire out. In fact, several of our volunteers have had to fight fire on the first night of their first shift.
Our officers are very cognizant of the demands that our diverse community places on our firefighting skills, so they hold us to a high standard of excellence. To maintain that standard, we train every night, on every shift, on everything from firefighting to EMS. We are also a member of the South King County Fire Training Consortium, which means you’ll be taught the same tactics, techniques, and procedures that are used by nearly all the fire departments in South King County. If you’re trying to get hired locally, this is a huge benefit.
In addition to the in-house training, we fully support the personal and professional development of our volunteers. If an interesting external training opportunity arises, simply ask to go and if we have room in the budget for it, we’ll send you. It’s that simple. In the past, we’ve sent our volunteers to fire behavior classes, regional training conferences, and the Puyallup Extrication Team’s three day vehicle extrication course. And, if you’ve volunteered with us for a year, we’ll even send you to EMT school.
King 20 is a single-station fire department. We are very tight-knit. You can expect that it won’t be long before our Fire Chief knows you by your first name. Our volunteer association and union local regularly team up to host social events, which can be anything from a simple night out at a hockey game all the way to a competitive softball league. The sense of camaraderie that you will develop will no-doubt be strong. When you train together, eat together, and wake up in the middle of the night to fight fire together, you just can’t help but develop an extraordinarily tight bond.
Once you’re a volunteer, we consider you family—which also means we are committed to helping you get hired. We recognize the special role our department serves in the bigger scheme of things: we are a feeder team. We have a revolving door and we are proud of it. We host interview classes and one-on-one training to give our volunteers the competitive edge that’s necessary to help them realize their dreams. It’s no secret that our volunteers consistently get hired. In the narrow view, this may mean we have a high turnover, but in the big picture, our commitment to our volunteers results in the King 20 legacy being represented in just about every fire department in Western Washington.
Do you want to be a part of that legacy?