Big Bear, CA, January 5, 2017 – Big Bear Fire Department is recognized as the Most Fit Fire Department in 2016. They have achieved this distinction for five years running from Fitness Appraisal, Inc. Once a year, firefighters are put through an intensive physical fitness screening process. An Exercise Physiologist at FAI tests firefighters with an array of physical fitness testing equipment and blood tests. Big Bear Fire Department has surpassed the ideal standard of 1500 points, topping the rankings for 2016 achieving an average performance score of 1690.8.

Each year, FAI determines the Most Fit Fire Department among its clients based on the average Physical Performance Score among all firefighters in each department they test. The ideal standard is 1500. According to the Physiologist at FAI, “This was a stellar year for Big Bear Fire Department. The level of commitment and enthusiasm concerning their performance in the program was at an all-time high.” Big Bear Fire Department’s Chief Willis commented, “I am so proud of our firefighters; they are highly motivated to maintain their personal health and fitness.”

Ten of the Department’s firefighters scored above 1,800 points and were recognized for their accomplishments at the December 13, 2016, Big Bear Fire Authority Board meeting. Those recognized include Engineer/Paramedics Jim McDaniel, Jon Bidwell and Brian Lambert who scored above 2,000; Engineer/Paramedics Bobby Whitmore and Brandon Willis, Apprentice Firefighter/Paramedic Kevin Cole and Apprentice Firefighter/EMT Brandon Medeck scored between 1900 and 1999; and Firefighter/Paramedic Picciano, Apprentice Firefighter/EMT Ross Winfield, Captain/Paramedic Luke Wagner and Apprentice Firefighter/EMT Shawn Sutherland scored between 1800 and 1899. Eight firefighters scored between 1500 and 1799.

Following closely on the heels of Big Bear Fire Department’s performance ranking are departments from Del Mar and Morongo. Other departments tested include Atascadero, Barstow, Barona, Camp Roberts, Rialto, Ross Valley and Solana Beach, CA, in addition to Prescott, AZ.