Prince George’s County Acting Fire Chief Marc S. Bashoor kept his promise and completed the Candidates Physical Ability Test (CPAT). He successfully negotiated the physically challenging course as he vowed during a previous visit. On December 13, 2010, just a week into his tenure as Acting Fire Chief, Bashoor visited the test site for individuals competing for a job with the Prince George’s County Fire/Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Department. He had the opportunity to observe applicants participating in the CPAT. The job of a firefighter /medic is one of the most physically demanding jobs and requires high levels of cardiopulmonary and muscular endurance. Chief Bashoor is seen going through the eight critical, physical tasks that simulate actual job duties on the fire ground. This test is physically demanding and requires that candidates be physically fit to be successful. This test is intended to ensure successful candidates are of the highest caliber expected by the citizens of the Prince Georges County who make the significant investment in a Firefighter/Medicâ€™s career. Candidates are provided 10 minutes and 20 seconds to complete the course.
During his visit to the test site in December, Chief Bashoor vowed to the candidates and instructors that he would participate in CPAT and pledged to complete the course. On Saturday, January 22, 2011, Bashoor returned to the CPAT test facility in Millersville, MD, and donned a protective helmet and vest weighing 75 pounds which is intended to duplicate the weight of a firefighters personal protective equipment. Bashoor completed the course and kept his vow. A quite “gassed” and exhausted Bashoor succeafully completed the course albeit 1 minute and 7 seconds beyond the allotted time. The Fire/EMS Departments Health and Wellness Coordinator Bill Bussing stated, “It’s not unusual for a participant to not complete the course or not complete in the prescribed time on the initial try, which, is why we allow the candidates several opportunities to practice the course before the actual qualification test. I was impressed with Fire Chief Bashoor, he did very well for his first time on the course.”
Being the competitor that he is, Chief Bashoor has now pledged to return and complete the course again within the allotted 10 minutes and 20 seconds.