ELMIRA HEIGHTS, N.Y. (WETM) — The Elmira Heights Fire Department held its annual open house to recruit volunteers. For the firefighters, it was about giving back to the community and inspiring people to join the department to improve the area.

It is important to have enough people on standby to be prepared and put out fires. The open house was a way for potential volunteers to get acquainted with how firefighters operate and learn how they can help their community.

The department is supplied with many pieces of equipment, and volunteers will be trained on what their functions are and how everything used is documented. From emergency medical equipment to rescue tools for industrial accidents, there is always something to be hands-on with and learn new things from.

Chris Morgan of the Elmira Heights Fire Department said, “We can teach them about EMT, we can teach them how to fight fires, do it safe, correct, and to be honest with you, it’s just an experience that someone can’t forget when they’re able to help someone.”

According to Morgan, having one new volunteer join is better than none.

Captain Mike Riker of The Elmira Heights Fire Department said, “It’s great. Keep your community safe and you’re going to meet new friends, which you’re helping a community, all the way.”