A 10-week program designed to give Evanston residents a taste of what it’s like to be a firefighter is scheduled for a September 11 launch.

The Citizen Fire Academy, as it is called, will meet on Thursday evenings from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Evanston Fire Department facility at 909 Lake St.

Participants must be at least 21 years old, and space is limited to about 20 students.

Following an introduction to the department and its mission, the program will cover self-contained breathing apparatus; fire prevention, alarm panels and sprinkler systems; engine company and truck company operations; vehicle extrication; special teams that deal with hazardous materials, water rescue, and technical rescue; and dealing with live burns.

The academy will conclude with a formal graduation for students who complete all of the program’s requirements.

For more information, check the city’s website or call Tim Gobat at (847) 866-5940.

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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1 Comment

  1. Privatize the Evanston Fire Department

    The Village of North Riverside is considering privatizing its fire department, saying rising pension costs and a state requirement that municipalities fully fund pensions have forced it to make drastic changes.

    Evanston should at least consider the same. Perhaps the Citizen Fire Academy can be reformed into a more sophisticated program to train volunteer firefighters. Evanston could have a volunteer fire department combined with privatized fire department.

    Remember, Under a new state law, municipalities must fully fund pension obligations by 2016. If towns don't make the payments, the state may take money from their sales tax. That will mean the city would have to raise taxes again to match the lost revenue. 

    Evanston property taxes are going up as some home values decline. Food, gas and energy prices continue to climb as inflation begins to rear its ugly head.. 

    Evanston needs to cut its budget. Privatizing fire and sanitation services would be a great start. Give hard hit taxpayers a break. 

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