Neighboring Dept. may fold up
Our neighboring department may fold. Almost all of there members have retired or quit due to the actions of their administration. They run about 10 calls a year, No EMS and have only about 6 members left.
We have on our department, members who were members of both departments and quit the other, and remain with us.
My question, If that department folds, and we start to service that area, should we invite those remaining members of that department to join us? Should we add that Twp. as part of our district or take on their area under a contract? Or run away from all of this as fast as we can?
Fire Protection Arrangement
Here are several considerations, that you may want to consider, before you commit to absorbing the adjoining FD's response area:
1. Would this annexation affect your ISO rating that you have for your current response area?
2. Does your FD have adequate apparatus, equipment and personnel to respond to the absorbed response area?
3. How much money would it cost to provide service to the absorbed response area? Would you be able to recover that expense from a contract or other payment(s) for services?
4. Would you be legally bound to accept any liabilities (debt, Fire Act Grant commitments, etc.) of the former FD?
5. Could you obtain the current firefighting apparatus and equipment of the disbanding FD to supplement your existing firefighting arsenal? (If you are going to add more firefighters to your membership, the current bunker gear from the disbanding FD may be needed for those new members of your department.)
6. Would your governing board (city council, fire district board, etc.) be favorable in absorbing the newly proposed response area? Would the governing board (city, township, etc.) of the newly proposed response area be favorable in securing a fire protection arrangement with your FD?
7. Is there any special/target hazards, that are located in the absorbed response area, that you will be providing fire protection for? Examples are school(s), high rise occupancies, chemical plants or other hazardous materials sites, interstate highway(s), military facilities and other hazardous locations that may result in your FD purchasing special equipment for (hazmat, ladder truck, etc.)?
8. What type(s) of water supply are available for this area? Will you have to add tanker(s), do you have the correct threads for using any fire hydrants?
9. Is this proposed response area serviced by your current 911 dispatch center? If not, you will have to make arrangements with the 911 dispatch that services it and possibly add more radio channels to communicate with them.
It is best to do your homework before taking responsibility for providing fire protection to this proposed response area. If you do and need a contract, your FD attorney will need to draw one up, to conform to your state statutes.