Tacoma fills vacancies with 20 new firefighters

Staff writerJuly 9, 2014 

COURTESY PHOTO — Tacoma Fire Department

The first of 20 new firefighters hired by Tacoma Fire have started their shifts.

Several of the firefighters began work Wednesday, and others will start Monday, after some specialized training, spokesman Joe Meinecke said.

They were sworn in June 30 after 13 weeks of training on topics such as fire suppression, emergency medical services, rescue and hazardous materials operations.

It’s the first class the department has had in a couple years, and is bigger than the average group of recruits, which ranges from 12 to 16 Meinecke said.

“We kind of hit that tipping point again where we had to hire new employees to replace those who have been retiring,” he said. “It’s not additional firefighters, they’re just replacing vacancies.

“We needed to get these folks online so we have enough to cover our minimal daily staffing.”

The new recruits work as probationary firefighters for one year, “until they demonstrate they have the skills to be a full-fledged firefighter,” Meinecke said.

Alexis Krell: 253-597-8268 alexis.krell@thenewstribune.com thenewstribune.com/crime-news @amkrell

The News Tribune is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service