ROCKPORT RAMBLINGS: Rockport call firefighters graduate fire academy | News

Two Rockport Fire call firefighters have graduated from the Massachusetts Firefighting Academy’s Call/Volunteer Recruit Firefighter Training Program.

lt. Joseph Lucido and Firefighter Thomas Beaton, both members of Rockport Fire Squad One, were among 21 recruits from 13 fire departments in Class 95 who completed 240 hours of training on nights and weekends during the 16-week program. They received certificates of completion at a ceremony held Feb. 28 at Hamilton Wenham Regional High School, 775 Bay Road in Hamilton.

“As volunteers we’re not required to do this, but these two volunteered as it fit in with their schedules,” said Rockport fire Chief Kirk Keating. “They spent two nights a week in Hamilton and every weekend in Stow. At the end they had to pass an exam to achieve their Firefighter 1 and 2 certification.”

Lucido and Beaton took part in a program with a standard recruit training curriculum, meeting national standards. The two trained to respond to all types of hazards and emergencies, and test and maintain their equipment, including self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), hydrants, hoses, power tools, and apparatus.

They also learned about the latest science of fire behavior and suppression tactics, from certified fire instructors. They received training in public fire education, hazardous material incident mitigation, flammable liquids, stress management, and self-rescue techniques. The intensive program involves classroom instruction, physical fitness training, firefighter skills training, and live firefighting practice.

“Every year we try to send two or three down (to the academy), we have been offered this program for 10 or 12 years now,” said Keating, who himself attended the academy when he became assistant chief. “I felt I couldn’t I could ask these men to do what I didn’t do.”

The chief said both Lucido and Beaton have been on the force a number of years.

“First responders are on the front lines of any crisis and these newest firefighters are needed now more than ever,” said Deputy State Fire Marshal Maribel Fournier, acting director of the academy. “The rigorous training they’ve completed provides them with the fundamental skills and knowledge necessary to protect their communities safely and effectively.”

Town Meeting reminder

Town Meeting will be held Saturday, April 2, at 9 am, in the Rockport High School gymnasium, 24 Jerden’s Lane. There are 18 items on the warrant.

Cemetery cleanup

The Department of Public Works began spring cleanup in cemeteries on Friday. All winter baskets, decorations, wreaths and artificial flowers should have been removed by that time.

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