Bayard Volunteer F.D.: One big happy family looking to grow - Scottsbluff Area News, Sports, and Weather

Bayard Volunteer F.D.: One big happy family looking to grow

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All this month we're putting the spotlight on volunteer fire departments and the men and women who are stepping up to keep their communities safe.

Today, meet the Bayard Volunteer Fire Department. "It's a family that you come into that will love and support you through anything," explains Amanda Stricker. "That's why I joined and why I stayed."
The Bayard Volunteer Fire Department is one big happy family. Everyone one from their president who's been fighting fires for 51 years, to the assistant chief who works in agriculture.
"Right now we have 29 people active on our roster," says Chief Michael Harimon.
And those firefighters and EMT's  all come from different backgrounds- but they all share the same philosophy.
"When the pager goes off, we're on the same team," explains Brad Schmall. "It doesn't matter what background we have or what you were doing 10 minutes ago. It doesn't matter who you were arguing with. When you step through the door, you're on the same team.
The Bayard Fire Department receives an average of 120  EMS calls per year, and upwards to 40 fire calls, where they have to use equipment like their crash rescue rig,  "We keep a couple air packs in here, our jaws of life are in our jaws of life are in here," says Stricker. "Anything we might need to run a motor vehicle accident. Chalking, everything like that, air bags, all in this trunk."
Or their 1978 Ford pumper,  "750 gallons per minute," explains President Butch Duncan. "It pumps and we just use it as a back up right now."
Fire Chief Mike Harimon says that about 75 percent of their calls are for their district- which he says is relatively small- but they also rely on providing and receiving mutual aid.
"You have to rely on the people that you can get. When a call comes in and sometimes you have to rely on your neighbors to help you with that."
One of the obstacles they face is funding. Right now they are trying to buy a washing machine for their turnout gear. "That's something that falls under equipment that would normally be paid for. But the money isn't there, so we have to try to raise the money on our own to buy stuff like that."
Fundraiser's like their upcoming stag feed help pay for those types of expenses.

But at the end of the day... The Bayard Volunteer Fire Department is looking for a few more good men and women to join their team.

"We can always use more volunteers," says Stricker. "Based on what time of the day it is, we have people that work night shifts, we have people that work day shifts. There's not always enough people in town that are available to cover every call that we have. So anytime anyone is willing to become a firefighter, become an EMT, we will welcome them with open arms. We can always use new members."

If you are interested in joining the Bayard Volunteer Fire Department, they meet the first Thursday of every month at the Fire Hall.

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