The Huntsville Fire Department is comprised of 19 full-time and 30 volunteer firefighters, who make up most of the ranks.
Fire Chief Greg Mathis explained how being a volunteer firefighter works, with each person receiving $12 per call and retirement in the Texas State Firefighters’ and Fire Marshals’ Association (SFFMA).
“Without these 49 men and women, we could not function and provide the types of service we do. Everyone hired for the position is trained to SFFMA standards, up to and equal to the certification levels of the career staff,” Chief Mathis said. “Personnel can be members of the specialty teams, and are trained to operate all apparatus.”
Chief Mathis said there is a hiring process, with some required training necessary before being an active member.
“If someone is interested in becoming a volunteer, I suggest they attend one of our training sessions on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month at 6 p.m. at Station 1, off of Veterans Memorial Parkway,” Chief Mathis said. “This is a chance to get to know the staff, review our processes, and decide if this is the right fit.”
Chief Mathis noted that the City also has a bunker program for college students interested in firefighting. He explained that the program allows students to live rent-free in a station, in exchange for services, training, and being involved in the same day-to-day operations.
“Volunteers and students are important to us because they are crucial to supplementing our workforce,” Chief Mathis said. “Our doors are open any time to anyone interested in this position, and we welcome them to stop by any station.”
Chief Mathis pointed out that many of the full-time firefighters transitioned over from the Volunteer Fire Department.
For more information, contact Chief Mathis at GMathis@HuntsvilleTX.gov or call 936-291-5944.