New York General Municipal Law
Sec. § 209-I
Emergency Service by Volunteer Firemen


1.

Whenever a volunteer fireman is within this state, but outside the area regularly served by the fire company or fire department of which he is a member and has knowledge of a fire or other emergency at or near the place where he is for the time being, such volunteer fireman may report to the officer in command of the paid or volunteer fire company or paid or volunteer fire department, or in command of one of the paid or volunteer fire companies or one of the paid or volunteer fire departments, engaged in the handling of any such fire or other emergency and, on an individual basis, offer his services to assist such fire company or fire department. After his services are so accepted, the volunteer fireman shall then be entitled to all powers, rights, privileges and immunities granted by law to volunteer firemen during the time such services are rendered, in the same manner and to the same extent as if he were a volunteer member of the fire company or fire department which he is assisting, including benefits under the volunteer firemen’s benefit law. Any such commanding officer shall have power, in his discretion, to so accept the services of a volunteer fireman unless the legislative body of the city or the village, the board of fire commissioners or other governing board of the fire district, or the town board of the town in relation to (a) the fire companies serving territory outside villages and fire districts or (b) a town fire department, as the case may be, by resolution heretofore or hereafter adopted, has forbidden the acceptance of any such services pursuant to this section. Any such resolution shall continue in effect until amended or repealed by the adoption of a subsequent resolution. The officer in charge of any fire company or fire department shall be notified promptly of the adoption of any such resolution and of any amendment or repeal thereof. 1-a. A volunteer firefighter who, because of his residence or usual occupation, is regularly in the area served by a volunteer fire company or department of which he is not a member may nevertheless volunteer his services on an on-going basis to the officer in command thereof to assist such fire company or fire department for the purpose of assisting such company or department’s general or emergency ambulance services, or for the purpose of assisting such fire company or fire department at a fire or other emergency scene or for the purpose of training with such fire company or fire department. After his services are so accepted, the volunteer firefighter shall then be entitled to all powers, rights, privileges and immunities granted by law to volunteer firefighters during the time such services are rendered, in the same manner and to the same extent as if he were a volunteer member of the fire company or fire department which he is assisting, including benefits under the volunteer firefighters’ benefit law. Any such commanding officer when authorized by the legislative body of the city or the village, the board of fire commissioners or other governing board of the fire district, or the town board of the town in relation to (a) the fire companies serving territory outside villages and fire districts or (b) a town fire department, as the case may be, shall have power, in his discretion, to so accept the services of a volunteer firefighter. 1-b. In the event that an active volunteer firefighter provides services under subdivision one of this section when there is no jurisdictional officer in command present, such volunteer firefighter shall be entitled to coverage under the volunteer firefighters’ benefit law provided the fire company or municipality the volunteer serves adopts a resolution granting coverage for the provision of such services. Upon arrival of a jurisdictional officer in command, such volunteer shall be entitled to benefits in the manner set forth in subdivision one of this section.

2.

The municipal corporation or fire district which would be liable for the negligence of any volunteer members of the fire company or fire department which has accepted the services of the volunteer fireman pursuant to this section shall be liable for the negligence of such volunteer fireman while acting, after such acceptance and during the time such services were rendered, in the discharge of his duties as a volunteer fireman in the same manner and to the same extent as if he were a volunteer member of the fire company or fire department which he assisted. If the fire company or fire department which has so accepted the services of a volunteer fireman pursuant to this section is a paid fire company or paid fire department, such paid fire company or paid fire department shall, for the purposes of this subdivision and section two hundred five-b of this chapter, be deemed to be a “duly organized volunteer fire company” within the meaning of such section two hundred five-b.

3.

As used in this section, the term “volunteer fireman” means a “volunteer fireman” as such term is defined in section three of the volunteer firemen’s benefit law; the term “area regularly served” means the home area of the volunteer fireman as described in subdivisions one, two, three, four or five of section thirty of the volunteer firemen’s benefit law and, in addition, any other area served pursuant to a contract for fire protection and the terms “fire company” and “fire department” shall include emergency rescue and first aid squads or other squads or units of a fire company or fire department.
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Dec. 13, 2016