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Old 01-04-2018, 06:23 PM   #1
TXbowman
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Default About to start SAFD Fire Academy

Start date is January 22. I'm excited but nervous too. All I've heard is how tough it is. Can any of you guys give me some details on what to expect? For guys that have been through one, is there anything you really enjoyed in the academy? Thanks.
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Old 01-04-2018, 06:29 PM   #2
Gonzo
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Iíve been through two academies, San Jac and HFD. They were both fun to me, youíll come across some tough moments but as long as u carry a no quit mentality youíll do just fine. I quit HFD after 3 years for a better paying job but God I miss it every day.


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Old 01-04-2018, 06:30 PM   #3
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I went thru it in 1975. Its a lot more "military bootcamp" style now. Cant be all that tough though. Girls make it through. Good luck.
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Old 01-04-2018, 06:38 PM   #4
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Congrats man! I graduated FWFD academy this summer. Some of it was difficult but it was a lot of fun. You will make a lot of good buddies. If you ever fill like it’s too hard, just keep at it. After you graduate, the job is awesome!!!
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Old 01-04-2018, 06:49 PM   #5
flywise
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Just keep telling yourself this is your one shot. That will help through those really tough days.
When you get an assignment to a station you will realize reality is nothing like the academy.
Best job in the world so enjoy it
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Old 01-04-2018, 07:16 PM   #6
TSFiredog
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I retired from Houston Fire after 30 years as a Captain, just study, listen, work hard and NEVER GIVE UP! IT'S THE BEST JOB IN THE WORLD! Just keep telling your self you can do this and keep your mouth shut and work harder tHan the guy next to you and you will succeed. Good luck my future Brothet.

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Old 01-04-2018, 07:27 PM   #7
brandonsbird02
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I put myself through rookie school and loved it all but really enjoyed ropes. I still enjoy when we get to go over the side of the tower. Keep a strong mind, don't quite and keep ur ears open/mouth shut. Always be the first one up when something needs to be done.

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Old 01-04-2018, 07:28 PM   #8
TXbowman
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Thanks for the great words. I appreciate it.
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Old 01-04-2018, 09:43 PM   #9
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Good luck amigo!
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Old 01-04-2018, 09:49 PM   #10
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You can do it brotha, fire academy was one of the most fun and yet challenging things I’ve done. You’ll make buddies that will last forever. Don’t give up because the best Job in the world is waiting on the other side. Gotta find it in your heart to finish it out.
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Old 01-04-2018, 10:10 PM   #11
Pullersboy
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It's funny how I see multiple guys on here saying the academy was "fun." You won't find many (if any) cops saying the academy was fun. And, you can be sure they've taken the fun out of the job.
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Old 01-04-2018, 10:25 PM   #12
animalhse
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Default About to start SAFD Fire Academy

Congrats to you! Keep your head straight, and work hard. Good luck!
I'll probably see you at uthsc when you go through emt school. I'm there now in the ems class. Congrats again!
Btw: if you aren't working out regularly get on it!

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Old 01-04-2018, 10:25 PM   #13
DUKFVR
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Good Luck! You can make it through!
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Old 01-05-2018, 08:03 AM   #14
whackem and stackem
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Do what your told, be respectful, follow orders and all will be fine. The one's that seem to have a problem are the one's that are clowns or know it alls. Good Luck you will enjoy it.
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Old 01-05-2018, 08:21 AM   #15
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Congrats! Work hard and always be willing to do more. Youíll make friends for life, but also remember the name you make for yourself starts now and will carry w/ you from here on out. Have fun, learn as much as you can and welcome to the greatest job in the world.
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Old 01-05-2018, 08:32 AM   #16
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I’m sure firehot will chime in soon.
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Old 01-05-2018, 09:02 AM   #17
IvoryRoot
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Congratulations.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=DfqDfQfZgr0
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Old 01-06-2018, 09:09 AM   #18
TXbowman
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I've been doing as many pull ups, push ups, sit ups, squats, lunges and running as I can. Trying to drop a couple pounds beforehand too. Hope I'm in good enough shape. I did alright in the conditioning classes.
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Old 01-06-2018, 09:13 AM   #19
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Love the video!
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Old 01-16-2018, 06:31 PM   #20
animalhse
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TXbowman View Post
I've been doing as many pull ups, push ups, sit ups, squats, lunges and running as I can. Trying to drop a couple pounds beforehand too. Hope I'm in good enough shape. I did alright in the conditioning classes.


Very good! Good luck to you again!! Just around the corner!


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Old 01-16-2018, 06:42 PM   #21
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Good luck!
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Old 01-16-2018, 06:46 PM   #22
gsimms
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I've never heard you so polite and encouraging there mac! Must be EMS!!! Welcome to the brotherhood. Greatest career in the world.
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Old 01-16-2018, 06:49 PM   #23
FireNguns
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Good luck brother. My advise is the same as most. Just don’t give up amd most importantly is have initiative. Find something to do and don’t wait to be told. When everyone else is sitting around BSing, there is something else you should be doing. You have 2 ears and only one mouth for a reason.
Best of luck. It’s the BEST job in the world
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:09 PM   #24
EarleyBird
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gonzo View Post
Iíve been through two academies, San Jac and HFD. They were both fun to me, youíll come across some tough moments but as long as u carry a no quit mentality youíll do just fine. I quit HFD after 3 years for a better paying job but God I miss it every day.


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I spent 8 years with HFD. Left in '14 for a job 30 mins from home (took me about an hour and 45 mins to get to the station in H-Town) for twice the money. I miss the job itself and the days off, but don't miss Houston, its hood-rats, the crooked politicians who control the purse strings, or its traffic at all! I still have until May of '19 to go back. It's tempting sometimes. The job itself was fun and sometimes rewarding.

Good luck, OP. The academy isn't hard if you're focused on getting through it. And don't worry about the fitness part of it. Any and all PT you do will be to the mean average of everyone in your class. I overthought that and was in way better shape than I needed to be for the 9 months I was in the academy. The burns are fun and sometimes pretty challenging. You'll make some lasting friendships.
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:12 PM   #25
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Oh, and station life is the bomb-dot-com. It's just like deer camp, but without the beer.
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Old 01-16-2018, 07:17 PM   #26
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Dont talk to animalhse until you are off probation. There is a reason #9s is called animal house.
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Old 02-02-2018, 06:43 PM   #27
TXbowman
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So I am two weeks into the academy. It's been a long two weeks. Something I have learned about that I wasn't aware of is the problem of cancer in fire fighters. Many of the instructors who are 20+ year vets talk about watching several friends wither away to cancer. It gets talked about almost daily. I hate to be a chicken about it but it is really concerning to me.
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Old 02-02-2018, 06:45 PM   #28
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Wear your BA religiously.
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Old 02-02-2018, 06:50 PM   #29
glen
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Its not just hose draggers. The reason you hear about it is guys are close to one another just like your hero the cops. In any brotherhood there will be illness and tragedy and it effects everyone. In a lot of the working world if someone that they work with has something tragic happen it is just life. When it happens to us its a brother.
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Old 02-02-2018, 07:43 PM   #30
TXbowman
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Will do Walker. Is the problem as common as they're saying? Is it because guys didn't wear their BAs back in the day?
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Old 02-02-2018, 07:54 PM   #31
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I personally dont think the cancer rate for firefighters is much more than the general population. You have to realize that there is a lot of politics involved in health hazard claims both from Local 624.and IAFF. You take care of yourself and use all your protective gear and you will be as safe as joe the plumber.
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Old 02-02-2018, 08:17 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TXbowman View Post
So I am two weeks into the academy. It's been a long two weeks. Something I have learned about that I wasn't aware of is the problem of cancer in fire fighters. Many of the instructors who are 20+ year vets talk about watching several friends wither away to cancer. It gets talked about almost daily. I hate to be a chicken about it but it is really concerning to me.
24 year vet here....

Here's some advice on the cancer issue. Yes it hits FFs more than the general population (per capita). I don't have the data source with me but I can get it. Here is a great video to watch. I've worked side by side with all of these people...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJz9Hs5OYLg


Use your SCBA at ALL times... dumpster fires, car fires, house fires, and especially during overhaul. The old guys are gonna talk crap but it's because they know you are doing right... stick to your guns. Our rookies are now the change agents in our Dept.

Wash your gear religiously! The dirty helmet and gear was a "badge of honor" when I came on. NOT anymore! Keep your gear clean. It prevents the spread of carcinogens.

After every fire, SHOWER ASAP. Get that crap off of you! Start the decon process on the way back to the station, use wipes, wet towels, etc.

Eat right, exercise, and do a yearly physical. IF something pops up, it's better to catch it early.


I'm not gonna lie, it's eye opening and scary. But there is a lot of research being done and culture change is happening. Educate yourself and most importantly.... protect yourself! What we do isn't a job....it's a great CAREER! Embrace it and enjoy it!
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Old 02-02-2018, 08:30 PM   #33
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Good luck. Stay positive.
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Old 02-02-2018, 08:52 PM   #34
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...what they said-and get an extra nomex hood or two. Switch em out after each fire and get em washed. Gloves too. Clean your face piece and headband of your helmet after each fire as well. Pretty much anything with direct skin contact-keep it clean! Best of luck to ya and "Welcome to the Fire!"
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Old 02-02-2018, 08:55 PM   #35
firehot
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From what im told if you made it through the first week the rest is cake.. I didn't go through the "new" SAFD academy so I cant say but we have a few rookies at our station that say it can be a little over the top. It wasn't like that when I got in but if you keep your head up and you'll be fine. Remember its not like that out in the field.. A word of advice when you do finally make it out in the field. I was at 9's (the "animal house" that Cap Walker is talking about) when I first came out and that is where I was taught and learned the 3 rules all rookies should learn when the get into the field.
1- Never let your officer do more work than you,
2- never complain about doing work,(especially at a fire),
3- Don't be lazy. Always be the first to get up and do the dishes, wash the motor...learn everything anyone will teach you..
Follow those rules and you be fine.. its the best job in the world... Good luck brother.. welcome aboard...
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Old 02-02-2018, 09:48 PM   #36
Acameron52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redhoghunter View Post
24 year vet here....

Here's some advice on the cancer issue. Yes it hits FFs more than the general population (per capita). I don't have the data source with me but I can get it. Here is a great video to watch. I've worked side by side with all of these people...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IJz9Hs5OYLg


Use your SCBA at ALL times... dumpster fires, car fires, house fires, and especially during overhaul. The old guys are gonna talk crap but it's because they know you are doing right... stick to your guns. Our rookies are now the change agents in our Dept.

Wash your gear religiously! The dirty helmet and gear was a "badge of honor" when I came on. NOT anymore! Keep your gear clean. It prevents the spread of carcinogens.

After every fire, SHOWER ASAP. Get that crap off of you! Start the decon process on the way back to the station, use wipes, wet towels, etc.

Eat right, exercise, and do a yearly physical. IF something pops up, it's better to catch it early.


I'm not gonna lie, it's eye opening and scary. But there is a lot of research being done and culture change is happening. Educate yourself and most importantly.... protect yourself! What we do isn't a job....it's a great CAREER! Embrace it and enjoy it!
Ditto to all of this. If you even have to think about it, GO ON AIR. I get made fun of by the old dogs all the time but Iíve seen enough people in my family die of cancer that werenít in the fire service, I donít want to chance it. After a fire take a good long hot shower and get clean. We are starting to get saunas that are awesome to sit in after fires.
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Old 02-02-2018, 09:50 PM   #37
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I can echo what the other guys have said. It is definitely the greatest job on the world. Try to enjoy every part of fire academy. It all goes by very quickly. The three rules firehot mentioned are gold. I will also add that you should call everyone Sir and Ma'am until you are told not to. I just made Division Chief this week and I was still cleaning dishes and bathrooms this week. Don't forget that you're never too good to do the station chores. Enjoy your time and be safe.

Last edited by Djwilliams; 02-02-2018 at 09:52 PM.
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Old 02-02-2018, 10:20 PM   #38
TXbowman
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Thanks gentlemen. Your insight is much appreciated.
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Old 02-02-2018, 10:42 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whackem and stackem View Post
Do what your told, be respectful, follow orders and all will be fine. The one's that seem to have a problem are the one's that are clowns or know it alls. Good Luck you will enjoy it.
X2
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Old 02-02-2018, 11:16 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by Pullersboy View Post
It's funny how I see multiple guys on here saying the academy was "fun." You won't find many (if any) cops saying the academy was fun. And, you can be sure they've taken the fun out of the job.
Maybe you should make a change 😂😂😂 I have been through both and fire is fun compared to PD. Its the good life👍👍
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Old 02-03-2018, 06:43 AM   #41
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Good Luck!
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Old 02-03-2018, 07:43 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by whackem and stackem View Post
Do what your told, be respectful, follow orders and all will be fine. The one's that seem to have a problem are the one's that are clowns or know it alls. Good Luck you will enjoy it.
That's not true
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Old 02-03-2018, 08:04 AM   #43
Captain39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walker View Post
I personally dont think the cancer rate for firefighters is much more than the general population. You have to realize that there is a lot of politics involved in health hazard claims both from Local 624.and IAFF. You take care of yourself and use all your protective gear and you will be as safe as joe the plumber.
Your clueless if you think that.
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Old 02-04-2018, 11:01 AM   #44
sideways
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Dang I would be working at Walmart if that was all I could find after watching that video.


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