Standard Operational Guidelines Greenwood Township Volunteer Fire Department
Standard Operational Guidelines
Greenwood Township Volunteer Fire Department
Article I Name of the Organization
Section 1. The name of this organization shall be Greenwood Township
Volunteer Fire Department.
Article II Purpose of this Organization
Section 1. To organize and maintain a Fire Department for purpose of keeping the
region fire control conscious, protecting life and property from
destruction by fire, and fulfilling all contracts and mutual aid agreements.
Article III Officers
Section 1. The officers shall consist of: Fire Chief, Assistant Fire Chief,
Safety/Training Officer and Administrative Assistant.
Section 2. For the selection of Fire Chief a position posting shall be placed in the
Fire Hall. To file for any officer position any applicant must submit an
application outlining training history, education, meeting attendance, and
call response. The Chief is to be approved by the Town Board of
Supervisors’. The Chief has the right to appoint and provide background
information (training history, education, meeting attendance, and call
response) for the Assistant Chief, Safety/Training Officer, and
Administrative Assistant with Town Board approval.
Section 3. A vacant position shall be posted and a 30 day period shall be
established for filing using the same process outlined in the above
procedures. If several positions are open, the higher ranking position
shall be filled first.
Section 4. The qualifications of the officers are set forth in detailed job descriptions.
Article IV Duties of the Officers
Section 1. The line officers of the Greenwood Township Volunteer Fire Department
are the Chief, Assistant Chief, Safety/Training Officer and Administrative
Assistant. The qualifications are set forth in their detailed job description.
How each is chosen is set forth in Article III.
Section 2. The Chief shall have control of the Department at all fires and drills, and
shall be a member of all special committees formed.
Section 3. The Assistant Chief will assist the Chief as needed and command the
department at all times in the absence of the Chief.
Section 4. The Safety/Training Officer will observe that every member does their
duty and is safe on scene or drill.
Section 5. The Administrative Assistant shall call the roll on the return from all fires
or alarms and at all meetings of the department, noting absences in the
roster; keep an accurate record of the proceedings when assembled for
business; give notice of all special meetings.
Section 6. In the absence of all officers, the senior member present shall assume full
Article V Membership
Section 1. Membership shall be restricted to individuals 18 years of age or older and
reside (permanently or seasonally) within 20 minutes of the Greenwood
Section 2. The Fire Chief or his/her designee(s) will review the initial application
which includes age, address, and reason for seeking position.
Section 3. At the time the candidate submits the written application they will be
advised that the Fire Department will conduct a background/reference
check pursuant to Minn. Statute Section 299F.035. The candidate will
provide appropriate release to the Fire Department.
Section 4. Prospective members shall be interviewed by the Chief and/or other
Officers to determine dedication to the Fire Department and general
Section 5. The Chief will inform the Town Board of new applicants and recommend
qualified candidates for approval.
Section 6. Subject to the discretion of the Town Board of his candidate, the Fire
Department has primary responsibilities for performing such selection
components as application review, reference/background checks and oral
interviews. The Fire Department is also responsible for recommending
candidates for final selection by the Town Board or its designee. The
Town Board or its designee is considered the final appointing authority.
Section 7. The new applicant will be required to take and pass a standard Fire
Department medical examination and have a medical exam every two
years at Greenwood Township expense.
Section 8. The member will be required to attend NFPR 101 and/or Emergency
Medical Responder (EMR) training. The member who wishes to become
an EMR will not be allowed to perform Emergency Medical Services until
completion of the EMR training. The Firefighter will be required to make a
successful completion of the Firefighter I/II training within a period of 5
years. If there are unusual circumstances preventing the member from
attending some of the training, the member will need written permission
from the Fire Chief and Chairperson/Employee Supervisor of the town
board to extend the training period. The cost of training and equipment
will be provided by the Fire Department. The member is responsible for
attending the necessary training and providing certificates of training to
Section 9. All training including other agencies, and yearly refresher courses must
be approved by the Chief or Assistant Chief and only scheduled
classroom time will be compensated at the normal run rate with
classroom time verified by the instructor.
Article VI Attendance Requirement
Section 1. Any member who shall be un-excused from more than 50% of meetings
and drills and one paged Fire Department call during any 6 month period
is subject to a review by the officers. The Administrative Assistant shall
inform the Officers of such, and if said member is unable to provide a
valid reason for being absent, the Chief will forward said member’s name
to the town board for possible termination.
Section 2. Any member who expects to be absent from a meeting or drill shall notify
any officer and said officer shall make a report at the meeting. Sickness,
employment or temporary absence from the region shall be deemed
Section 3. Should a member be terminated he/she will be required to return all
issued communication equipment and firefighting safety equipment
(turnout gear, wildland fire fighting gear) within 30 days of termination
Article VII Duties of Members
Section 1. It shall be the duty of each member available to respond to every alarm of
fire with as little delay as possible and use his/her best efforts in the
discharge of the duties assigned to him/her by the officer in command
and obey all orders within reason.
Section 2. All members are expected to attend all training and business meetings as
well as active firefighting, except as stated in Article VI Section 2.
Section 3. It shall be the duty of every member answering a fire alarm or call to
return to the station after the fire and help place the fire truck and
equipment in a workable condition for future use unless excused by the
officer in charge.
Section 4. No member shall take or loan any article from the station without the
consent of the officer in charge.
Section 5. No member shall share the Department’s keylock password with any
Section 6. No Officer or member shall contract any debt in the name of the
Department without the consent of same, except the Chief who is
authorized to spend up to $1,000.00 per expenditure without prior
Article VIII Loss of Membership
Section 1. Any member absent from more than 50% of meetings and drills in a
calendar year, and one paged Fire Department call in a 6 month period
shall be subject to the provisions of Article VI, Section I.
Section 2. Member may be granted a leave of absence for 6 months and not lose
Section 3. Any member desiring to resign must state his/her intentions in writing,
giving reasons and submit to the Town Board for a vote to accept.
Section 4. Members expelled cannot be proposed for membership again within 6
Article IX Meetings
Section 1. Monthly business meetings and drills will be held on the 1st and 3rd
Tuesday of each month at 6:00 P.M.
Section 2. Notice of Special Meetings must be legally posted by the Town Clerk.
Article X Duties at Meetings
Section 1. If 5 members are present, they shall constitute a quorum and shall
proceed with business, provided at least one of those present is an
The senior Officer shall preside at all meetings.
Section 2. When there is not a quorum, it shall be the duty of any officer present or
a willing member present in the absence of an officer to call the meeting
to order, take roll call, mark the absentees and adjourn the meeting.
Article XI Roll Call after a Fire
Section 1. After an alarm of fire or drill, if the apparatus has been in service the roll
call shall not be taken until the equipment has been checked and placed
back into service. An excuse may be granted by the officer in charge.
Article XII Firefighter’s Pension
Section 1. Members of the Fire Departments pension will fall under the
administration of the Public Employee Retirement Association of
Minnesota (PERA). Fifty percent attendance and active participation of
scheduled meetings/drills and responding to a minimum of one call in the
first half of the calendar year and one call in the second half of the
calendar year are required for pension credit with PERA.
Article XIII Rules of Order
Section 1. Every member who shall wish to offer a motion or to speak upon any
question shall rise and address himself/herself to the Chair (Chief), and
shall not proceed further unless recognized by the Chair. When more
than one person shall arise to address the meeting at the same time, the
presiding officer shall name the person entitled to speak.
Section 2. No member shall be allowed to speak more than twice on the same topic
without leave from the chair, no more than once in any case until
every member desiring to speak on the pending question shall have
Section 3. All motions shall be recorded in the minutes.
Section 4. No motion shall be considered in order until it has received a second.
Section 5. When a motion is made and seconded, it is the duty of the presiding
officer to propose it to the department. Until this is done, it is not a
question before the department to be acted or considered in any manner.
Consequently, it is not then in order for any member to arise, either to
debate it or make any motion in regard to it whatsoever.
Section 6. When a motion is put, every member shall vote, either for or against the
same unless such member shall abstain from voting.
Section 7. Members, in addressing the meeting, will confine themselves to the
question under discussion and avoid personalities.
Section 8. A motion may be withdrawn by the member offering same, provided the
same shall be done before a decision or amendment or any disposition
thereof has been had or a vote taken thereof.
Section 9. No member shall be engaged in private conversation or discourse while a
member is speaking, nor in any manner interrupt such member unless to
call him to order.
Section 10. If a member is speaking out of order or otherwise transgresses the rules
of the Department, an Officer or any member may call him/her to
order, in which case the member so called shall immediately sit down
unless permitted to explain.
Article XIV Amending of these SOG’S
Section 1. Any minor amendments to these SOG’S such as the permanent changing
of a meeting or drill (date and time) shall require a motion and a second
from the floor and pass by two thirds membership of the Fire Department
Section 2. Any major amendments to these SOG’S shall be voted on by the Fire
Department membership and will require two thirds majority for passage.
After which said amendment shall be proposed in writing and referred to
the Town Board for adoption.
Article XV Driving Township Emergency Vehicles
Section 1. No member shall drive any Fire Department equipment until trained
and authorized to do so by Fire Department Officers. Each member
shall operate apparatus in a safe and efficient manner. In an
emergency or training situation, any Firefighter may drive if
authorized by an Officer.
Section 2. Firefighters who lose their ability to legally operate a vehicle, or are
otherwise prohibited from operating a vehicle while on duty, no
matter how temporarily must immediately report the situation to the
Town Clerk and Fire Chief, and keep them informed of any changes
thereafter. The Firefighter will not be allowed to operate a
Department vehicle but will be allowed to respond to a fire call,
provided they are able to perform all required functions of a
Section 3. On Duty Violations and Accidents. The Fire Department expects
persons driving on behalf of the Department will do so in a legal and
safe manner. Any Firefighter that receives a citation for a moving
violation or non-moving violation shall be solely and personally
responsible for all consequences associated therewith, whether operating
a Fire Department vehicle or a personal vehicle on Department business.
Recognizing the many potential adverse impacts, any Firefighter that is
involved in an accident while driving on Fire Department business—
whether in a Fire Department or personal vehicle—must immediately report
the incident to the Fire Chief and Town Clerk. The Fire Department will
make a determination as to whether the accident requires corrective action
with or by the individual. Such determination will generally be based upon
the question of whether:
a) A violation of this Policy contributed to the accident; or,
b) The accident is an accident which resulted from the individual’s
negligence in which the driver failed to do everything they reasonably
could have done to prevent it; or,
c) The individual took appropriate action following the accident; or,
d) If the individual had been involved in another On-Duty vehicle
accident within the past 24 months.
Section 4. Maintenance. All Firefighters that operate Fire Department owned
vehicles and equipment are required to keep the interior and exterior of
the vehicle in a neat and clean condition at all times; also to report any
unsafe conditions, and the need for possible maintenance.
Section 5. Off-duty Driving. The Fire Department has determined that a Firefighter’s
driving activity off-duty is a strong indicator of that individual’s On-Duty
driving conduct. Firefighters may face disciplinary action if the Department
finds that their off-duty driving conduct is putting the Department at risk. In
making such determination the Department shall consider the following
type of behavior to be cause for concern; however, the Department shall
consider also the individual’s performance history:
a) Conviction of Driving Under the Influence (DUI).
b) Conviction of death by vehicle, hit and run, fleeing or trying to
elude a law enforcement officer, driving while suspended or
revoked, or similar major driving offenses.
c) Suspension or revocation of driving license.
d) An overall driving history that reveals a pattern of convictions of
traffic offenses; particularly with three or more moving
Section 6. Seat Belts (Minnesota Statute 169.686 Seat Belt Use Required).
All occupants riding shall be seated when vehicle is moving.
All occupants riding in the department vehicles shall have seat belts on
(buckled), preventing the occupant from injuring themselves in the event
of a sudden stop or accident.
Section 7. Personal Vehicles. All Firefighters responding in a personal vehicle shall
comply with all state statues and laws, both when travelling to calls and
responding to the fire hall. Firefighters shall only drive personal vehicles
directly to calls in extreme circumstances. Firefighters shall bring
appropriate turn-out gear if needed. Firefighters shall return to Fire Hall to
sign in after call.
Article XVI Emergency Response – Gear and Equipment
Section 1. Every Firefighter shall wear the complete turn-out gear issued by the Fire
Department when responding to all emergency fire and/or rescue calls.
Officers may give permission to remove turn-out gear at appropriate
times. Turn-out Gear Includes:
a) Bunker Coat
b) Bunker Pants
d) Helmet with Eye Protection (chin strap under chin & earflaps down)
f) Hood (either helmet earflaps shall be worn down or wearing of hood
g) ANSI Reflective Vest on ALL roadways
h) Safety glasses when deemed necessary
Every Firefighter shall be responsible for general inspection and general
cleaning of their own turn-out gear as outlined in NFPA 1851.
Section 2. Medical Response, Turn-out Gear is not required but may be worn.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) shall be worn. PPE may include
gloves, masks, eye protection, and clothing
Article XVII Drug and Alcohol Policy
Section 1. A Firefighter who has consumed more than two drinks of alcoholic
beverages in the previous four hours shall not respond to an emergency
call. A Firefighter who has responded to an emergency call and is
suspected of being under the influence of alcohol can be tested and have
a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) no greater than .04%.
Section 2. Upon arriving at the fire hall in response to an emergency call, a
Firefighter shall immediately inform the Fire Officer in charge of any of the
a) If the Firefighter has consumed alcohol during the preceding four
hour period, and the amount consumed in that period.
b) If the Firefighter is using any prescription medication, nonprescription
medication that is labeled with a warning regarding
drowsiness, driving, or operation of machinery, or drugs.
c) If the Firefighter has used any illegal drugs during the proceeding 24
A Firefighter who fails to comply with this requirement is subject to
disciplinary action up to and including termination.
Section 3. A Firefighter who has consumed any alcohol in the proceeding four hour
period, or who is using a prescription or non-prescription medication that
is labeled with a warning regarding drowsiness, driving, or operation of
machinery or who has used any illegal drugs during the proceeding 24
hour period shall not perform any of the functions listed below, but instead
shall be assigned to other duties.
a) Drive any vehicle;
b) Use SCBA;
c) Enter a Structure Fire;
d) Provide emergency medical assistance or first aid.
The Fire Officer in charge shall restrict the activities of any Firefighter as
they deem appropriate if the Fire Officer in charge reasonably believes or
suspects that the Firefighter may be unable for any reason to safely and
properly perform the duties of a Firefighter. This applies even if the
Firefighter is in compliance with the requirements of Paragraphs A
through I of this policy.
Section 4. Any Firefighter who during an emergency response observes any
indication that another Firefighter is under the influence of alcohol or
drugs shall immediately report those observations to any officer. Such
indications include the odor of alcohol on the breath, slurred speech,
unsteady gait, or disorientation. After further investigation by the fire
officer, the suspected Firefighter maybe subjected to a BAC or a Urine
Section 5. No Firefighter shall consume alcohol within the 8 hours prior to any
scheduled meeting, training, or Fire Department event. In any case of a
scheduled social event that may involve consumption of alcohol by a
substantial percentage of the Fire Department members, the Fire Chief
shall arrange in advance for emergency response by a neighboring
department pursuant to the appropriate mutual aid agreement. Any
Firefighter that has used any illegal or non-prescription drugs is subject to
the Town of Greenwood drug policy.
Any Firefighter who fails to comply with these requirements is subject to
Article XVIII Workers Compensation/Injured on Duty
Section 1. Employees, as defined by the Minnesota Worker’s Compensation Act, are
covered by Worker’s Compensation Insurance. Worker’s Compensation
Insurance provides wage replacement and medical payment benefits to
Town employees who become ill or injured as a result of performing their
required work duties. Worker’s compensation has two goals:
a) To return employees to work as soon as possible.
b) To bring employees back to work at or as close as possible to the
same income they had prior to the injury.
If an employee is injured on the job, the following procedures shall be
a) The employee shall report the injury to his or her immediate
supervisor as soon as possible and receive medical attention if the
injury is serious. All injuries, no matter how insignificant, shall be
reported to the employee’s supervisor.
b) The supervisor shall complete the Supervisor’s Report of Accident
and submit the report to the Town Clerk as soon as possible to avoid
any delays in processing the claim. The Town Clerk shall complete
a First Report of injury, establish a Town claim number, and submit a
copy of all information to the Town’s worker’s compensation carrier.
c) Any information, medical bills, or requests for reimbursement, shall
be submitted to the Town Clerk to be made a part of the employee’s
workers compensation claim file for submittal to the Town’s worker’s
d) It is the employee’s responsibility to keep his or her supervisor and
the Town informed about the status of his or her medical condition
and return to work date.
Article XIX Criminal Offenses
Section 1. All Firefighters are expected to remain law abiding. Recognizing the
many potential adverse impacts, any Firefighter that is charged with any
of the following criminal activities (referred to herein) must immediately
report the incident to the Fire Chief and Town Clerk:
a) All felonies
b) All gross misdemeanors
c) Any misdemeanors involving theft, fraud or dishonesty
Section 2. A criminal conviction may not automatically result in disciplinary action
against the Firefighter. A determination by the Fire Department will be
made regarding the direct relationship between the conviction and the
employment position. The Fire Department may take disciplinary action
against the Firefighter, up to and including dismissal, for criminal offenses
which relate to the Firefighter’s ability to perform their job, or which has or
may create a present or future danger or risk to the Fire Department or
public. By way of example, and not as an exclusive list, the following
offenses will be considered as having a direct relationship to the
employment position of a Firefighter:
a) Crimes involving the use of alcohol and/or controlled or illegal
b) Assault and other violent crimes
c) Crimes involving dishonesty (i.e. theft, fraud, forgery)
d) Crimes involving illegally entering onto property owned by others (i.e.
burglary, trespass, vandalism)
e) Crimes involving tampering (i.e. tampering of public records or
information, false reports to law enforcement, tampering with or
fabricating of physical evidence)
f) Crimes of a sexual nature
In determining whether disciplinary action is taken, the Fire Department
may consider the individual’s performance history and any competent
evidence of sufficient rehabilitation.
Special note: This Standard Operating Guideline document may be reviewed and changed at
any time to better serve the Greenwood Township Fire Department and residents of Greenwood
Township with Town Board approval.
Board Approval on_____Nov 13, 2018________________________
Board Chairperson______Mike Ralston_______________________ Clerk______Sue Drobac__________________________________