Moline Fire Department grows to respond to a higher call volume

MOLINE, Illinois  --  The Moline Fire Department has finally hired 11 new recruits.

This comes after the department has been struggling to find anyone to fill open positions. They put out a recruitment video earlier this year. They credit the video for bringing in these new applicants.

" It is a unique job and it takes unique personalities and unique people to be able to do this with some of the things we have to do and see,"  Training Officer Jamie Hudson said. "So it's not for everybody, but it's a wonderful career."

The 11 new recruits were sworn in on September 11, 2018. They are now training with the department so they can be ready for the job.

Five of the recruits will spend two months getting certified. Two of the new recruits are currently completing EMS training. Four of the recruits came to the department certified, so they do not have to go to training school. The department hopes to have them on the shift by October 1, 2018.

The department responds to an average of 18 calls every day. Hudson says they are seeing a 5% increase in the number of calls each month so the new recruits will help prevent overworked firemen.

"We're going to have fully staffed, fully functional ambulances and fire trucks," Hudson said. "We won't have to worry about the impact of having our guys work multiple shifts in a row."

The 11 new recruits include the department's first African American firefighter. There are also two more women firefighters joining the team.