Do you want to be a Gulfport firefighter?
Saving people from danger, answering emergency calls, and putting out fires are just some of the daily duties of being a fire fighter. Right now, the Gulfport Fire Department is looking to add new members to the team.
An elderly lady caught in the rising flames of a house fire had fire crews rushing to the scene. This was one of the first days on the job for Joseph Abercrombie when he joined the Gulfport Fire Department about two years ago. “She had almost made it to the front door and I think she had fell down and tripped and she was getting engulfed in the smoke.”
Abercrombie says he helped save that woman’s life that day, one of the most gratifying moments on the job. “Excited to be able to use what you’re taught and be able to help someone.”
Fire Chief Mike Beyerstedt said, “Most people when they call 9-11, it’s the worst day of their lives and they’re looking for help.”
Now, the Gulfport Fire Department needs your help. With several retiring firefighters, the department has just started accepting applications this week. Fire Chief Mike Beyerstedt says he’s looking for people with a good spirit of service. ” We go through what they call 12 mets or more when you’re inside a fire because of all the heat and the physical stress that’s on you.”
Firefighters go through training courses that test their physical abilities, making sure they’re in good enough shape to handle any emergency call that comes into the station, a place where they have to be prepared for the long hours ahead. Firefighter Curtis Prestwood said, “We spend a third of our lives here at the station which means we spend a third of our lives away from our families.”
Gulfport crews say they put out three to five fires on a weekly basis. “From fires to car fires, trash fires, house fires,” said Prestwood.
Firefighters tell News 25 that even though the dangers that come along with this job can get pretty high, by the end of the day it’s worth it. “I love it because I get to help people every day and so it’s very rewarding,” said Chief Beyerstedt.
If you think you have what it takes to be a Gulfport firefighter you can call 228-868-5831. “It’s a job of service and it’s a job of sacrifice and we all share that mentality here,” said Prestwood.