Does your department have a policy about firearms in the firehouse?
Do you hold a concealed carry permit? If so, do you have your firearm with you in the firehouse? How do you secure it when you respond on an emergency call?
Understanding that each firehouse has its own concealment rules, I feel it is important to allow concealed carry members to carry in the firehouse. Although we do everything possible to help each person in our community in time of need, there are those who will find fault with us. As the attacks on first responders have risen over the last few years, we are sitting ducks at scenes and at our firehouse. A trained concealed carry individual is and should be qualified to responsibly handle a situation.
while i hold a permit and am authorized to carry it I do not carry my sidearm on calls, this is the preference of the department!
I do however carry a stun light in my vehicle for protection as well as zip-ties for handcuffs.
I have never needed to use them as our local police handle any disturbances easily
and i agree with Theresa if you are properly trained and authorized you should be competent enough to handle the situation.
but i will say if you are in turnout gear and entering a fire you should not be wearing a sidearm period.
security trained personnel will not be distracted by a fire or accident and will be observing people at all times but as one might see so many fire departments are understaffed. it requires double duty standards that may not be in the scope of just anyone.
military veterans are most suited for this!
I am a CHP holder, as are many in my volunteer dept. All of us that can, do carry both at the station and on calls. Given the increasing amount of violent drug related calls, added with the chaotic nature of the beast, we prefer to be able to defend ourselves if necessary. The only time we disarm is to deal with an actual fire. Most of us carry everywhere, everyday and are well trained and competent. The department also has a copy of everyones permits.
As far as securing when we do disarm, Most of us respond in POVs so we just lock them up when donning gear. The driver/operator doesnt go into the fire and will usually stay armed.
I know some volunteer department's who have police officer's that are also firefighters have locked gun boxes attached to their turnout gear lockers so they can lock their gun up before responding.