Fire Department

A Day In the Life of a Recruit in Academy 16-01

Tara Reyes | May 3, 2016

A day in the life of a Hayward fire recruit starts early.  Preparedness, dedication, and attention to detail are essential as we come together to face the challenge of a new day in the Academy.

Our group meets early in preparation for our 0800 line-up.  We begin our morning by checking out our self-contained breathing apparatus and personal protective equipment.  Once our gear has been checked and is good to go, we take some time as a group to review any homework and instructional points from the previous day.  Amid the boot shining, uniform crease perfecting, and the recalling of department-specific equipment specifications, members of the group commonly take this time to practice equipment presentations and compare notes on everything from fire behavior to skills applications.

By 0800 our day is off and running.  Once the classroom is set up, we go outside and line up on the blacktop in front of the burn building to await inspection by our Command Staff and Cadre.  Each member of the group is usually asked a question pertaining either to the previous day or an upcoming drill. 

Our morning in the classroom will usually start with equipment presentations by our Academy-mates, as well as instruction on the drill for that day.  Once everyone is all set, we get right to work.  Recently, our days have been filled with engine module work where we've become more proficient at faster hydrant times, effective fire attack, equipment familiarization, multi-engine operations, and live-fire training.

After the morning training, we usually break for lunch.  Lunch in the Academy is more than just food; it’s a point where we take a few minutes as a team to re-collect, review, and critique how to approach the rest of the day.  After a quick change of clothes, we head back out to the drill grounds, refocused and ready to smooth out our operations.

When drills for the day are done, we clean our classroom, Academy building, bathrooms, and any other areas we may have noticed that need attention.  Once equipment has been cleaned and returned to a state of readiness, we're ready to leave for the day.

Although we leave the training grounds, the day won’t be over for many of us as we return home to study and prepare for the day to come.  It’s been a great day as we strive to become a part of a Department that takes as much pride in its mission statement, which is to protect lives and property by providing superior fire suppression and emergency medical services, supported by prevention through responsible and innovative regulatory and educational programs, as it does in its skill, personnel, and community.