Special Programs

Firefighter Assist Search Team (FAST)

A Firefighter Assist and Search Team (FAST), also known as a Rapid Intervention Team/Crew (RIT/RIC), is a specialized team of firefighters dedicated solely to search and rescue of other firefighters in distress at the scene of an emergency incident.  While not actively involved in search and rescue activities they will be alert for changing conditions of a fire, unsafe operations, and accountability of firefighters on the scene.  If called to aid unconscious, injured or trapped firefighters they are prepared to get them out of harms way immediately for further medical treatment as needed.  A FAST team shall have no other operational assignment during an incident. Multiple alarm or complex fires may require the response of multiple FAST teams.

The Elsmere Fire District is an agency partner of the Town of Bethlehem FAST Team along with Delmar, Selkirk, and Slingerlands Fire Departments.  The town wide team consists of firefighters from all four of the departments trained to an advanced level.  The training includes regular department training, completion of a NYS FAST Course, and town wide team training exercises.  All four agencies respond together as a group.  Delmar EMS responds with the team to serve as a dedicated emergency medical resource.

The team is available to surrounding fire departments and has responded many times when requested.


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