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Frequently Asked Questions



When does the Board of Fire Commissioners meet?

The Board of Fire Commissioners meet the second Tuesday of every month with the exception of January which is the first Tuesday and December is the third Tuesday. All Board meetings are at Station 1 at 7:00 p.m. 953 Main Street, Clifton Park and are open to the public. Top

Why does a fire engine respond when I call for an ambulance?

It is department policy to send at least one vehicle on all life threatening calls; heart attacks, trouble breathing, possible strokes, vehicle accidents, etc. The vehicle may be an engine, MED (medical truck), or heavy rescue vehicle, depending on the type of call. The personnel on these vehicles do patient assessments, basic emergency medical treatment, and assist the ambulance crew. Personnel on these companies are New York State Certified First Responders, Emergency Medical Technicians, or Paramedics. Top

Why do I see fire trucks go through intersections with their red lights flashing, and then turn them off? Are they just in a hurry to go somewhere?

Emergency lights and siren are used only when responding to a call – no exceptions. Apparatus responding to calls are frequently cancelled, or the first arriving unit determines that the call is not an emergency and tells the units to “downgrade” to a non-emergency mode, or to return to their station. Top

Why do firefighters break windows and cut holes in roofs when the fire is inside a building? It seems that they are causing more damage than the fire.

Fire in a building creates a tremendous amount of heat and smoke. In many instances, firefighters must remove this heat and smoke before they can get close enough to extinguish the fire. Heat and smoke rise, so cutting a hole in the roof and breaking out windows in strategic locations allows the smoke to vent upwards, allowing cool air to enter the structure from below. We call this "ventilation". This improves visibility and lowers heat conditions for the firefighters inside, allowing them to quickly and safely extinguish the fire. Remember, heat and smoke cause damage too, so ventilation will actually reduce overall damage to a building and contents. Top

If I were trapped in a burning building, would firefighters be able to rescue me?

This all depends on you and the fire protection features of the building you are in at the time of the fire. Relying on the expertise and resources of your local firefighters to save you in a fire is risky at best. The best rescue is self rescue. Install smoke detectors in your home and check them monthly. Have a fire escape plan that includes 2 ways out of each room/home, and practice it monthly with your children. Learn what to do in the event of fire in your home. Never re-enter a burning building. If you panic, your chances of survival decrease drastically. If you are trapped and you know the fire department is on scene, make your location known by yelling, opening a window and hanging something out, or calling 9-1-1 and relaying your location to the dispatcher. Stuff bedding or towels under the door to keep deadly smoke and gases out of the room. Do not hide! Stay near a window or doorway. Firefighters are trained to search under windows and doorways during rescue searches. If you are on a second floor you may be able to hang from a window and drop to the ground without suffering significant injury. This option should be considered a last resort, and only when smoke or heat makes the room you are in uninhabitable. Top

When I see an emergency vehicle approaching while I am driving, should I always pull over to the right and stop?

State law, and common sense, dictate that vehicles yield to emergency vehicles that are operating their emergency lights and siren. Emergency vehicle drivers are taught to pass on the left whenever possible when responding in an emergency mode. When you see an emergency vehicle approaching from any direction, slow down, pull over to the right, and stop. Do not pull to the left. However, there are rare circumstances where that may not be possible (if you car is already stopped, and you don't have anywhere to pull over). Simply stay put until the emergency vehicle goes around you. If you are blocking the route of the emergency vehicle, and you are able to pull ahead and over into a clear area, use your turn signal to indicate your intentions, and proceed at a safe speed. Never slam on the brakes and stop in the middle of the road when you see apparatus approaching. Make no sudden moves. If an emergency vehicle is approaching from the opposite direction, you should always pull over to the right and stop. You have no idea if they are proceeding down the road, or are planning on turning into a driveway or intersection right in front of you. Do not tailgate, "draft", or follow a responding apparatus closely. Not only is this illegal but it is also deadly; you run the risk of collision as vehicles pull back out into traffic after the emergency vehicle goes by. Top

What do blue or green lights mean on a car?

Volunteer firefights are allowed to equip their vehicles with a blue light and ambulance volunteers are allowed to equip their vehicles with a green light if they choose. A blue light does not give them the rights of an emergency vehicle with lights and siren on. However, these lights are meant to communicate to other motorists on the road that they are in fact responding to an emergency. We do ask that motorists pull to the right whenever safely possible to allow these vehicles with blue lights to cautiously pass by. Keep in mind, these volunteers could be responding to your house. Persons operating a blue light are not authorized to violate any vehicle and traffic laws in New York State. New York State Vehicle & Traffic Laws Article 9 states that a “blue light may be affixed to any motor vehicle owned by a volunteer member of a fire department… provided such volunteer fireman has been authorized in writing to affix a blue light by the chief of the fire department… The blue light may be turned on by the volunteer firefighter only when engaged in an emergency operation.” Top

How do I get a copy of a Fire Report?

Jonesville Fire District has established guidelines for the release of fire or incident reports. The release of reports by is governed by the New York State Freedom of Information Law. All requests for reports must be in writing and must contain the name, address, phone number of requestor, date and location of the incident, and whether requestor is a person, business or firm. There is generally no fee for requested information. Requests for reports are usually processed in 5 to 10 business days. Please note that Patient Care Reports (PCRs) are confidential medical records and will only be released to the named patient. Contact the Fire District Offices at 518-877-8100 for more information. Top

I need a CPR course. Who teaches these courses locally?

CPR Courses taught to healthcare providers are different from CPR Courses taught to civilians, or “laypersons.” Jonesville Fire District does offer Healthcare CPR courses to members of the department throughout the year, but we do not currently have any layperson CPR classes scheduled.
You may wish to visit our neighboring ambulance service’s web page for layperson CPR classes:
Clifton Park/Halfmoon Ambulance Corps or call them at 518-371-3880 ext. 16. Top

Where can I get my blood pressure checked?

Ballston Lake Ambulance does free blood pressure clinics on the 1st Saturday of each month from 10AM to Noon. For more information please visit their web site: www.ballstonlakeems.com
or call them at 518-399-7066. If you are unable to make it at that time, feel free to come to Jonesville’s Main Street fire station during regular business hours, and ask them to take your blood pressure free of charge. Top

Can we schedule a fire engine presentation or station tour?

Yes, contact the Jonesville Fire District Offices at 518-877-8100 and we will be happy to assist you with your request. Top

I recently received a mailing or telephone call asking for a donation that benefits my local Fire Department. Who receives the donations?

The Jonesville Fire District does not solicit donations. All District funding comes from your tax assessment. These funds are divided between trucks, equipment, fire stations, administration, safety/training, and fire prevention. However, Jonesville Fire Company, which is the non-profit organization of volunteer firefighters, accepts donations from corporations, businesses, and citizens that would like to donate. These donations fund Company functions geared towards improving Recruitment and Retention of volunteers in the community. You may make a donation to the Jonesville Fire Company at:

Jonesville Fire Company
953 Main Street
Clifton Park, NY 12065

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How are members of the Fire Department hired?

All firefighters in Jonesville Fire Department are volunteers who live in your community. Some of them may be your friends and neighbors. We always welcome new members and no prior training or experience is necessary. For an information packet please contact the Jonesville Fire District Office at 518-877-8100 or click Join Us. Top

Common Myths about being a firefighter:


Being a firefighter is not safe.
Not really. Being a firefighter does include some inherent risks, but so does driving to work. Jonesville takes enormous strides and spends millions of dollars in equipment and training to ensure incidents remains as absolutely safe as possible.

I have no training or experience, so I can’t help.
Wrong! All training is provided at absolutely no cost. After completing some basic training in fire department operations, you may also opt to continue on and specialize in any of the following: Firefighting, Rescue, Emergency Medical Services (EMS), and Hazardous Materials.

I could never find time to volunteer.
Not so. There are some very simple requirements, but you can volunteer as much or as little as you desire beyond that. Our requirements are that all new firefighters complete a basic class in firefighting, then firefighters attend about 50 calls per year, and attend some training drills per year. Most members enjoy the experience so much that they frequently choose to do more.

I’m not like anyone in a Fire Department. I would never fit in.
If you have a desire to help the community, then you fit in. We are an extremely diverse department. Our members have included men and women in the following professional fields:

Advertising
Auto Repair
Central Air/Heat/AC
Doctor
Educator
Electrical/Gas Power
Engineering (Mechanical, Chemical, Environmental, & Nuclear)
Executive Management
Farming
Finance
Government
Health and Safety
Hotel/Restaurant Management
Information/Computer Technology
Lawyer
Maintenance
Military
Paid EMT/Paramedic
Paid Firefighter
Physician Assistant
Pilot
Plumbing
Police Officer
Politics
Production
Retail
Retiree
Sales
Student
Transportation & Shipping

See yours here? We welcome your addition.

Want more information? Please contact the Jonesville Fire District Office at 518-877-8100 or click Join Us.

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