Join Our Team
You may apply by stopping by Station 21 in Eastsound to pick up an application packet. Please call "Mac" McCorison at 360-376-2331.
Volunteer Firefighters respond to 911 emergencies, provide basic EMS support and assists with non-emergency duties. Volunteer Firefighters extinguish, control and prevent fires through proper training and education. Volunteer Firefighters may pull day or night duty shifts at Station 21 (Eastsound) and Station 24 (Deer Harbor). Volunteer Firefighters are needed at Station 24 (Deer Harbor), Station 25 (Olga), Station 26 (Orcas), and Station 27 (Doe Bay).
Becoming a Volunteer Firefighter requires participation in the Fire Academy hosted by OIFR. The Fire Academy takes up to four months, twice a week and all day Saturday. Upon completion of the Academy, volunteers will have acquired the necessary knowledge and will be provided the opportunity to test for their Firefighter 1 rating.
- Fire Academy is held every other year (alternate years are EMT training).
- Fire Academy requires over 140 hours of weeknight training, as well as multiple skills weekends.
- Failure to attend all classes and skills weekends will result in failing the academy.
To learn more about our next Firefighter or EMT training, contact "Mac" McCorison at Jmccorison@orcasfire.org.
Volunteer Wildland Firefighter
To become a volunteer Wildland Firefighter, Red Card Certification is required. This may be done by attending a Red Card training course that is held annually at the San Juan Fire Department. Continuing education to maintain certification is conducted on the fourth Thursday of every month in March, April, May, June, July, August, September, and October. Classes include team safety and communications, a Red Card refresher course, Brush and WASP pump operations, portable pump operations, and tool use and strategy.
To learn more about the upcoming Wildland class, please contact Dave Halloran or come by the Eastsound fire station.
Volunteer Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)
Volunteer EMTs are specially trained to handle trauma and medical emergencies, and are needed for all areas of Orcas Island. EMTs assist the Paramedic on duty with critical care techniques, such as:
- Administer CPR and AED
- King tube intubation
- Patient stabilization
- Administer BLS medications per protocol
- Other duties as described by the San Juan County Medical Program Director
Volunteer EMTs undergo training that is hosted by Orcas, Lopez, Shaw, or San Juan Island; the host agency rotates each year. EMT training takes approximately five months of classes on Tuesday and Thursday evenings, plus all day Saturday. Volunteer EMTs may pull day or night duty shifts at Station 21 (Eastsound) and Station 24 (Deer Harbor).
How to become an OIFR volunteer
We appreciate your interest in volunteering with Orcas Island Fire & Rescue. It is very important that prospective volunteers have a strong understanding of our district’s volunteer requirements, which are designed to ensure the safety of staff, volunteers, and the people we serve in our community.
We accept applications for volunteer clerical service, public education, emergency medical care, and fire suppression. Once you have completed training, you will be assigned to one of seven stations.
Volunteer Firefighter and EMT application process
- Review the expectations and submit an application package, available at Station 21 in Eastsound.
- We will contact you after reviewing your application, and completing your driving and criminal history report.
- You’ll need to attend the district orientation class to learn more about the Academy's program requirements and commitments. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions of staff officers.
- We will schedule a face-to-face interview between you and four department personnel.
- The interview board will make a recommendation to the Chief.
- The Chief makes a decision to accept or decline your application.
Volunteer Firefighter and EMT expectations
- Good driving record.
- Pass a criminal background check.
- Pay $200 for books used in training (reimbursed six months after completing academy).
- You will be issued gear and a uniform, but need to supply your own footwear.
- Volunteers are expected to participate in community events and to attend regular training.
- Volunteers are expected to respond to emergency calls and assist in maintaining our apparatus, equipment, and stations.
- Volunteers are expected to complete a minimum number of duty shifts, either from home, or from the Eastsound fire station.
- For station duty shifts you may choose whether to be on duty for day or night shift, upon approval of the officer in charge.
Volunteer Service Oath
Voluntarily take this oath with purpose and with pride.
I hereby accept the District’s Mission, Values and Principles as my own in the presence of my family, my neighbors, my officers, and my fellow Firefighters, EMTs, and First Responders. I understand that all these lives will be in my hands and mine in theirs. I am committed to developing my knowledge and skills at training and at drills, knowing that a life may depend on my ability to learn and my dedication to training. I make this oath knowing that my service will protect the lives and property of my family and my neighbors. Because this community and my fellow responders rely on me, I solemnly swear my dedication to the Fire Service as a member of San Juan County Fire Protection District #2. Separately and together we are the Orcas Island Fire & Rescue.
Your Orcas Island Fire & Rescue team needs volunteers in non-emergency capacities, too. Community members who feel the call to serve can participate in this rewarding work in a variety of ways.
The Auxiliary team plays a vital role in supporting Orcas Island Fire and Rescue by supplying food and beverages for firefighters and EMTs during extended emergency calls. Their support is crucial in keeping members nourished, hydrated, and working at their best during exhausting and stressful events. Auxiliary leaders carry pagers and alert the Auxiliary team when needed. The OIFR Auxiliary team may be called upon at any hour of the day and in all types of weather conditions.
If you’re looking for administrative support duties, we invite you to volunteer with our Helper Program. Filing and organizing never seem to be up to date, so volunteer help is always appreciated. Helpers also assist with set up and break down for public events, open houses and public education events. Volunteer hours are flexible — Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Whether you’re able to volunteer several hours per week or once a month, it is appreciated.
Individuals who volunteer with the OIFR Public Education Program assist in our efforts to inform and educate the community. Presentations, posters, pamphlets, and displays may be needed for school visits or community displays.