Capt. Randall Carnell of the Saanich Fire Department’s fire prevention division investigated the cause of a house fire on Walter Avenue in July 2020. (Black Press Media file photo)

Capt. Randall Carnell of the Saanich Fire Department’s fire prevention division investigated the cause of a house fire on Walter Avenue in July 2020. (Black Press Media file photo)

Name three parts of a ladder among the 40 questions Saanich’s 1940s firefighter recruit exam

1949 firefighter recruit exam no match for modern-day assessments

Saanich firefighting hopefuls in the 1940s had to pass a probationary exam featuring a long list of questions focused on naming equipment, explaining the department’s practices and citing bylaws.

Deputy Fire Chief Dan Wood of the Saanich Fire Department shared a copy of a 71-year-old firefighting entrance exam.

Saanich’s Deputy Fire Chief Dan Wood shared an image of a 1940s firefighting recruit exam that he said wasn’t nearly as complex as the assessments in 2021. (Dan Wood/Twitter)

READ ALSO: Pandemic meant more blazes, fewer calls for Saanich firefighters in 2020

The test, circa 1949, included 40 questions that asked the recruit to name three parts of a ladder, list three types of extinguishers, note how far a stove should be placed from a wall, explain why it’s necessary to ventilate a building on fire and describe the use of a sill hook.

“In 2021, these exams are complex and include all the fire and rescue work our firefighters train for,” Wood said.

Now, Saanich firefighters respond to more than just fires – as they’re trained in CPR, it’s common for paramedics to call on local fire departments for back-up on severe medical calls involving traumatic injuries, heart attacks and breathing difficulties. Saanich firefighters are also dispatched to rescues and spend time in the community working to prevent fires and teach residents about fire safety.

READ ALSO: Saanich firefighters receive Vital Link Award from paramedics for life-saving CPR

District of SaanichfirefightersLocal History

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C.’s public health restrictions on non-essential travel are reinforced by orders effective April 23, 2021 to stay within your own regional health authority except for essential travel such as work and medical appointmens. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 non-essential travel ban takes effect, $575 fines approved

Checks on highways, ferries between Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, Interior

Nic Hume and his fellow paramedic stopped to rescue the victim of an Oak Bay hit-and-run – a duck – at the end of their shift Thursday morning. (Nic Hume/Facebook)
Paramedics rescue unusual patient after Oak Bay hit-and-run

A female duck was rescued while a male one was deceased on scene

Craigdarroch Care Home has put in place enhanced control measures after Island Health declared a COVID-19 outbreak. (Google Earth)
Island Health declares outbreak at second Victoria long-term care home

Two staff members tested positive for COVID-19 at Craigdarroch Care Home

The government map (as of April 22) showing vaccine availability doesn’t have any Saanich Peninsula pharmacies listed, but the situation is fluid, and many readers have already registered. (Province of B.C. screenshot)
Vaccine availability a fluid situation for Saanich Peninsula

Government site may not show pharmacies, but registering still an option

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and United States President Joe Biden smile as they say farewell following a virtual joint statement in Ottawa, Tuesday, February 23, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Trudeau pledges to cut emissions by 40% to 45% by 2030, short of U.S. goal

Trudeau announced target during a virtual climate summit convened by U.S. President Joe Biden

As the snow in Manning Park melts, searchers are able to get a little farther each day. Photo submitted
Family resumes search for son missing in B.C.’s Manning park since October

‘This is our child, and we don’t give up on our children,’ said mother of Jordan, Josie Naterer

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Canada buys 65M Pfizer booster shots for protection against COVID-19 variants

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the deal with Pfizer includes options to add 30 million doses in both 2022 and 2023, and an option for 60 million doses in 2024

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: Have rising prices caused you to give up hope of buying a home?

Do you have a spare 50 grand or so kicking around (have… Continue reading

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of April 20

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

A plan flew over the Lower Mainland with a sign expressing some Canucks fans’ discontent with the team’s general manager. (Niqhil Velji - Twitter Screenshot)
#FireBenning movement gets off the ground in Metro Vancouver

Canucks fans raise enough money to fly banner over Metro Vancouver asking for team GM to be canned

The freed osprey keeps a wary eye on its rescuers after being deposited on its nest. (Photo credit: Greg Hiltz)
Hydro crew in Ashcroft gets osprey rescue call-out they won’t soon forget

Bird was tangled in baling wire hanging from a hydro pole, necessitating a tricky rescue

Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth speaks to media at the Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday February 5, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to announce travel restrictions today to limit COVID-19 spread

Mike Farnworth is expected to give details of what the government views as essential travel

A downed power line has sparked a brush fire along Yellow Point Road south of Nanaimo. (Cole Schisler/Black Press)
Vancouver Islanders warned of fire risk caused by dry conditions

As dry spell poised to end, officials warn of risks involved with backyard burning

Most Read