Members of Cherokee County Fire & Emergency Services (CCFES) attended the Georgia Fire Service Conference last week, August 22-25, in Augusta, GA. The conference is hosted jointly by the Georgia Association of Fire Chiefs and the Georgia State Firefighters Association. The event includes training sessions, firefighter competitions, and an annual awards ceremony. During the event members of CCFES obtained two trophies from the competition and one award during the annual ceremony.
The Georgia Firefighter Competition consist of teams from fire departments across the state of Georgia testing their skills and abilities against one another. The competitive events included Rapid Dress, an event where firefighters race to don their firefighting ensemble quickly and correctly; Busted Hose, an event where firefighters fight the pressure of water escaping from a hose to stop the flow and replace the burst section as quickly as possible; Tight Squeeze One into Two, an event where firefighters race to assemble hoselines and then utilize the hoses to direct water streams at appropriate targets; and lastly the Bucket Brigade, an event where firefighters utilize buckets to move large amounts of water up an elevated structure to resemble extinguishing a fire mush like earlier firefighters did before firehose was invented. At the completion of these events, the two teams that CCFES entered into the competition were awarded 2nd and 3rd Place Overall.
At the Annual Awards Ceremony held Friday night, The Georgia Association of Fire Chiefs named Deputy Chief Shane West the Chief Fire Officer of the Year for the State of Georgia. Chief West has served the community and worked for CCFES since 1995. During his tenure with the department, he has been promoted through the ranks and worked at a variety of stations gaining valuable experience. He obtained his paramedic license, served as an instructor for both fire and medical education, successfully completed the Georgia Smoke Diver program, received the Georgia Chief Fire Officer certification, and has chaired several committees and projects to improve the departments success. Shane and his wife Natalee are the proud parents of four children, Heidi, Kyle, Andrew, Emersynn and grandparents of Grayson James and Evelynn Reece.
Cherokee Fire’s leadership is proud of the hard work and dedication that each of its members put forth every day. These awards are a testament to the commitment our members have to training and preparing for emergencies in our community.