The Sandoval Signpost

An Independent Monthly Newsmagazine Serving the Community since 1989


Fire Recruits

New recruits include (back row, left to right) Corey Wright, Abraham Penner, Alejandro Gurule, Donnea Jackson, Evelyn Bennett, Scott Ashcraft; (front row, left to right) instructor Dan Shaw, Nancy Roope, Terry Sapp, Lorenzo Duran.

Nine new PVFB recruits sworn in; new officers elected

On March 4 the Placitas Volunteer Fire Brigade welcomed nine new recruits to the department. The day began with a simulated emergency-medical and fire call during which regular members of the department interacted with the recruits to address a mock vehicle accident and resulting fire. The new recruits were able to experience how the department responds to this type of call and practice working together as a team. The emergency scenario was followed by a potluck luncheon at Station One, and a swearing-in ceremony, which took place next to the brigade’s brand-new fire engine. Two area television crews were on hand to capture the excitement.

This group represents one of the largest recruit classes ever to join the brigade since its founding, in 1973. When asked about first impressions, new recruit Evie Bennett said, “I feel it is an honor to be a part of the PVFB. In an effort to give back to the community, I am receiving so much more in return. The members of the brigade have welcomed me into what feels like an extended family. They are committed to keeping Placitas safe. The training classes, led by Dan Shaw, were well run. He is an excellent teacher.”

In other PVFB news, the Placitas department elected new officers on March 7th. Bud Brinkerhoff was elected to serve as chief. Steve Snider was elected assistant chief, EMS, and Drew Owens was reelected assistant chief, fire. All three officers are active and highly regarded members of the brigade and the community.

Bud Brinkerhoff joined the department in 2002. He received certification as a Firefighter I from the New Mexico Firefighters Training Academy and is licensed with the state of New Mexico as an emergency-medical technician. During the last two years he served as a captain. Last year, he received national recognition as Firefighter of the Year, winning a Jeep Commander from the Chrysler Corporation.

Steve Snider is an EMT Intermediate and has Firefighter I training. He has been with the department for thirteen years, many of them as an officer.

Drew Owens has been a PVFB member for five years. He is an EMT Basic and has Firefighter I training.

All three officers are also trained in wildland firefighting.

The Placitas Fire Brigade is an all-volunteer organization. Brigade members provide area fire and emergency-medical services. Individuals interested in joining our ranks are invited to contact John Wolf, at 771-3788, or leave a message at the station, at 867-5080.

Fire restrictions in effect

As of February 28, Cibola National Forest implemented Stage I Fire Restrictions for the Mt. Taylor, Magdalena, Mountainair, and Sandia Ranger Districts, as well as the Kiowa and Rita Blanca National Grasslands. The restrictions are as follows:

• Campfires, charcoal grills, and stove fires are prohibited on national forest lands, except in forest-service developed camp and picnic grounds where grills are provided.
• Pressurized-liquid or -gas stoves, lanterns, and heaters meeting safety specifications are allowed.
• Smoking is allowed within an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter and free of all flammable material.

As always, fireworks are prohibited on all national forest lands.
Please contact the Cibola National Forest at 346-3900 for more details regarding where fires are allowed.

Spring into health

Rio Rancho Public Schools will host its third annual Sandoval County Health and Wellness Expo on April 22 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. This free family event is open to all ages and will offer health screenings, information on health issues such as smoking cessation and diabetes, information on alternative health practices, and more. The featured speaker will be Rick Bender, from the "Half Off with Tobacco" ad campaign.

There will be a showcase of local talent, and clown Jungle Janet will do balloon art and face painting. Prizes and a limited number of free cholesterol test coupons will be given out throughout the event.

If you are interested in providing a health-related booth or performing for the fairgoers, please download a registration form from (link is under Headlines) or call 771-4922, extension16, or e-mail

The fair will be held in the Rio Rancho High School cafeteria, 301 Loma Colorado.



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