Volunteer firefighters in short supply - Toledo News Now, News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Volunteer firefighters in short supply

Firefighters battle a fire in east Toledo. Firefighters battle a fire in east Toledo.

It's happening all over the state: Fewer men and women are volunteering to be firefighters.

"Twenty-five years ago, we probably had 60 volunteers," said Perrysburg Township Fire Chief Tom Brice. "Now, we probably have half of that."

Brice says people tell him it's too much of a time commitment, not enough pay, or too risky for a volunteer job. Volunteer Mike Thompson says it's that risk that makes the job exciting.

"Knowing that you have no idea what could come in when the tones go off, what could happen, what the run could be for," Thompson said.

Another volunteer, Barrett Dorner, says one reason people aren't signing up like they use to is because volunteering is so demanding.

"You have to put in the time, you've got to put as much in it as you want to get out it," Dorner said. "For some people it's tough, especially with the economy the way it is. You try to balance a full-time job and a volunteer job; it's really a juggling act."

But both say there's nothing like the rewarding feeling of serving their community.

Click here for more information on volunteering.

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