This has always been known as the fire service. In my mind its refered to in the same way as the military. Were both paid for by taxes, so why not? Take away ego and geography and this could work. having a standard for training that you can't fake, and spreading the wealth around so that areas that are volunteer wouldn't need to be. But I beleive if this is going to happen it has to be at the national level. A single organized entity that doesn't have district lines.
Instead of a National Fire Service (a daunting task, given the size and population of the USA), why not dream of, initially at least, having County Fire Services? With National standards of training? This would have to help in removing the problems of training deficiencies/differences, and also with the removal of expensive duplication of management. Maybe push for State FRS later. But National? Hmm.
Someone said earlier that the UK has a National Fire Service? Not really, they have County Fire Services (about 50 of them? Help me someone from the UK!), under government direction yes, but run locally with county municipal funding.
Additionally, the European and former British Empire countries you named have many years of socialized or semi-socialized government, centralized government control of a lot of financial and social issues, and they don't understand the concept of "federalism". A lot of the citizens of those countries tend to trust their government to take care of them.
Unlike virtually every other industrialized country, the U.S. was founded on federalism - the three levels of government that we use as checks and balances on each other. More importantly, our government was built based on...mistrust of government. That's why the states get to have their own Armed Forces, under the control of the state, not the feds. That's why we have the Constitution, including the 1st Amendment and the 2nd Amendment to back it up.
Then there's the issue of local control of government vs. state or federal government. Local government means that the government is close to the people, and that the locals get to decide how their tax dollars are spent. Local government also limits the distance away from your wallet that your tax dollars can be distributed to others...well, it limits how far the local dollars can be moved, anyway.
Hmmm...best wake up...I know exactly what would happen....Just like a public school system....Political BS and all fighting for their share of the pie...No...it works now....so don't fix something that isn't broken.....would be nice to see some money made available to all departments to meet operational costs...People and politicians don't realize what would happen to insurance costs for their tax payers without available fire coverage.......Stay safe all and always remember to keep the faith........Paul
i dont know about making one giant fire dept. but i think we should all have training on a national level. i think that every dept should be given the same training from your 36 class all the way to your 240. at each level you should recieve the same training that some one else in another state does
Pretty much a federalist here. The government does one thing well, defend us, and while the fire service could be wedged into that definition, I for one do not want to see any more government programs I get to pay for out of what is left of my pay check, after uncle sam gets his.
A national standard for the fire service would not be a bad thing, but it would take years to get everyone involved to buy in.
Each state has standards and the biggest issue I have is going from one to another without having to fight to recert in a new state.
The good news is that we have national standards - they're written by the NFPA in most cases (professional qualifications, fire safety codes, manufacturing standards, and training/operations standards) and FEMA in others (NFA leadership standards, ODP terrorism response standards, and NIMS.
If you have IFSAC or Pro Board certifications, they do travel, although generally only to other IFSAC or Pro Board states. Those standards are NFPA-based, so we do have a starting point.
The problem I have with this is that my state has chosen to implement a stairstepped standard. We have a state Fundamentals of Firefighting course that doesn't meet the NFPA FF-I standards. We also have IFSAC FF-I and FF-II certifications. Most of our career departments mandate FF-II. Most of the volunteers have the Fundamentals course. Some of the volunteers don't even have the Fundamentals class.
If the U.S. fire service was fully career as with the military, I could see federally-mandated professional qualifications standards. As long as we have volunteers who don't have the time, money, and mandate to take the extra training, some of them will get those quals and others won't. That's definately a federalist, state's rights, and local control approach. I don't see that changing any time soon.
Daniel, There are bigger problems to solve first. LODD We are still killing ourselves at a rate the is totally unacceptable. Is not "Life Safety" the first priority? National unity is a problem but so is the NFPA. Be Safe, Fred
Now lets take away the traditions and history of many departments who would suddenly be nationalized (are we really even broaching this subject?) and we have a nightmare.
From an outsider, who works under a State by State system- I reckon in many cases it's the "tradition" that is holding you back.
Tradition is great but when it stops or hampers change for the better, then it's unhealthy....