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  1. #1
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    Default Departments Closing

    Two N.C. Fire Departments Set for Closing

    MECKLENBURG COUNTY, N.C. --

    Two Mecklenburg County Volunteer Fire Departments are closing at the end of this month.

    They have more than $1 million in trucks and gear.

    Mallard Creek firefighters are giving all of it to the Huntersville Volunteer Fire Department.

    The items consist of a brush fire truck, a small medical vehicle, two fire engines and a tanker. Firefighters said engines alone cost more than $500,000 new and the ones in the case may be worth $200,000 to $300,000 each.

    Huntersville has already put some of its decals on the trucks.

    One firefighter told Channel 9's Jason Stoogenke that it's a $1 million gift.

    Huntersville resident Whitney Allder said her neighbor just had a fire this week at her home, so the donation hits close to home.

    "Big houses, lot of houses, lots of things could happen. It's so nice to have them here in case anything does happen and exciting that we do get this exciting free stuff," Allder said.

    Meanwhile, the Newell Volunteer Fire Department also plans to donate its four fire engines to a local fire department, but hasn't said which one yet.

    "Even after we're gone, our legacy's going to be there. These trucks will still be helping people somewhere, somehow after we're gone, and that's important to us," said Newell Fire Chief Matt Westbrook.

    Stoogenke asked Westbrook is taxpayers paid for the fire engines and he said, "No."

    Newell receives $11,000 tax dollars per month that firefighters spend on fuel, power bills, insurance, maintenance and some paid staff.

    Westbrook said Newell bought the vehicles, gear and equipment with other money that they have received to help them in the past and they are now just returning the favor.

    Stoogenke learned that state law prohibits volunteer fire departments from selling their equipment. There are required to donate it.

    The county is trying to figure out who will protect residents when Mallard Creek and Newell close.

    One possibility is to pay the Charlotte Fire Department to cover those areas.

    The city will discuss the request on June 27


    Does anyone in the area know why these departments are closing?

    Staffing? Money? Politics?

    Just curious.
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  2. #2
    Forum Member legeros's Avatar
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    Declining revenues, rising costs, and shrinking territory are reasons I have read. Metro Charlotte departments have slowly been shrinking in number over the decades. See http://legeros.com/ralwake/photos/we...ry.php?id=4413

    mjl

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    Forum Member Weruj1's Avatar
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    according to the story on this webisite ............Charlotte is expanding and they (the depts) cannot sell the equipment by law, they must donate it.............
    IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
    Pardon me sir.. .....but I believe we are all over here !
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    I'm sorry, I haven't been paying much attention for the last 3 hours.....what were we discussing?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Weruj1 View Post
    according to the story on this webisite ............Charlotte is expanding and they (the depts) cannot sell the equipment by law, they must donate it.............
    According to the article is doesn't sound like they are being annexed or Charlotte is moving in to cover those districts:

    The county is trying to figure out who will protect residents when Mallard Creek and Newell close.

    One possibility is to pay the Charlotte Fire Department to cover those areas


    It sounds like Charlotte may end up covering but it doesn't sound like the reason.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    According to the article is doesn't sound like they are being annexed or Charlotte is moving in to cover those districts:

    The county is trying to figure out who will protect residents when Mallard Creek and Newell close.

    One possibility is to pay the Charlotte Fire Department to cover those areas


    It sounds like Charlotte may end up covering but it doesn't sound like the reason.
    Sweet! Unionized firefighters taking over volunteers! The world is in alignment again!

  6. #6
    Forum Member Weruj1's Avatar
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    psst................http://www.wsoctv.com/news/28200434/detail.html play the video............it will set you free.............
    IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
    Pardon me sir.. .....but I believe we are all over here !
    ATTENTION ALL SHOPPERS: Will the dead horse please report to the forums.(thanks Motown)
    RAY WAS HERE 08/28/05
    LETHA' FOREVA' ! 010607
    I'm sorry, I haven't been paying much attention for the last 3 hours.....what were we discussing?
    "but I guarentee you I will FF your arse off" from>
    http://www.firehouse.com/forums/show...60#post1137060post 115

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deluge059 View Post
    Sweet! Unionized firefighters taking over volunteers! The world is in alignment again!
    Really trying to hold my tongue here.

    Anytime a VFD closes and is replaced by a career department or career members are hired in a VFD it's a loss, not a gain, for the fire service.

    Call me anti-career, but the bottom line not only is the volunteer fire service the roots of the fire service, and should be preserved at all costs when possible, but it is also the most cost effective way to provide service is small communities.

    In addition, in many cases when a larger career department annexes a surrounding district, 2nd and 3rd due resources often must come a significant distance to support that one, lone station on the fringe, which in the long run does a disservice to the residents.
    Last edited by LaFireEducator; 06-12-2011 at 09:09 PM.
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  8. #8
    Forum Member FyredUp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deluge059 View Post
    Sweet! Unionized firefighters taking over volunteers!
    As a career UNION firefighter let me be among the first to tell you how unbelievably stupid this comment makes you look.

    In a time when public sevants have become the easy target of every right wing wacko, and ****ed off taxpayer, the last thing we need is stupid crap like this dividing firefighters even more. To me, paid firefighters like you that rejoice in this kind of thing are pathetic excuses of professional firefighters. How would you feel if everytime a career FD laid off firefighters a volly came on here and said "SWEET, another opportunity for a Unionized FD to return to its roots of being volunteer. The world is in alignment again!" Doesn't sound so smart, or cute, or even funny, that way does it.

    I started as a POC firefighter on a small rural FD, and I am still there. I also am a POC firefighter on a neighboring community. Neither of which are anywhere near my career FD. I am as proud of my affiliation with these 2 FDs as I am of being a career firefighter. Frankly, the difference between them and guys like you is they don't wish ANY FD to be eliminated or to lose people. Unlike you, that seem to revel in others misfortune. I find it incredibly sad that you are so insecure that this would make you say what you did.
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  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber tree68's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Call me anti-career, but the bottom line not only is the volunteer fire service the roots of the fire service, and should be preserved at all costs when possible, but it is also the most cost effective way to provide service is small communities.
    There comes a time, though, when volunteers can no longer support the workload, be it directly fighting fire, or other fire department functions like inspections, etc.

    There are some areas where there is a significant workload but the volunteers are able to keep up. (Long Island, NY and Harve's area come to mind).

    There are others, however, where some form of career staffing becomes necessary. I'd much prefer that a volunteer FD recognize and acknowledge such a situation, especially when the resources (tax base) are available to provide career staffing.

    It's certainly not a slap in the face of the volunteers.

    Sometimes I wish we could add some sort of paid staff, but the resources aren't there right now.
    Opinions my own. Standard disclaimers apply.

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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by tree68 View Post
    There comes a time, though, when volunteers can no longer support the workload, be it directly fighting fire, or other fire department functions like inspections, etc.

    There are some areas where there is a significant workload but the volunteers are able to keep up. (Long Island, NY and Harve's area come to mind).

    There are others, however, where some form of career staffing becomes necessary. I'd much prefer that a volunteer FD recognize and acknowledge such a situation, especially when the resources (tax base) are available to provide career staffing.

    It's certainly not a slap in the face of the volunteers.

    Sometimes I wish we could add some sort of paid staff, but the resources aren't there right now.
    That was some of the information I was trying to get here.

    There are times however, when Chiefs simply take the easy road and decide to hire career staffing in an all-volunteer department as the "easy" solution rather than adding a package of incentives and taking the time to develop a real honest to goodness recruitment and retention plan, which does take some work, but often will increase (volunteer) staffing in a much more cost effective way than paying career members. Yes, there are times, but many times a departments skips the effort to improve their recruitment and retention and goes right to some full-time staffing.

    In the cases of career departments annexing volunteer districts, they often put a single station in that are commonly isolated by significant distances from the other department resources. That has been the case in Shreveport on the south end of the city. In fact, they built a station to cover an annexed area but never but any apparatus or personnel in the station to respond. It was almost 2 years, and after a major residential fire, before the residents woke up to the fact that the station wasn't manned and the closest station was actually not in the annexed area but still an pre-existing station in the city.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    As a career UNION firefighter let me be among the first to tell you how unbelievably stupid this comment makes you look.

    In a time when public sevants have become the easy target of every right wing wacko, and ****ed off taxpayer, the last thing we need is stupid crap like this dividing firefighters even more. To me, paid firefighters like you that rejoice in this kind of thing are pathetic excuses of professional firefighters. How would you feel if everytime a career FD laid off firefighters a volly came on here and said "SWEET, another opportunity for a Unionized FD to return to its roots of being volunteer. The world is in alignment again!" Doesn't sound so smart, or cute, or even funny, that way does it.

    I started as a POC firefighter on a small rural FD, and I am still there. I also am a POC firefighter on a neighboring community. Neither of which are anywhere near my career FD. I am as proud of my affiliation with these 2 FDs as I am of being a career firefighter. Frankly, the difference between them and guys like you is they don't wish ANY FD to be eliminated or to lose people. Unlike you, that seem to revel in others misfortune. I find it incredibly sad that you are so insecure that this would make you say what you did.
    Its called a joke. Im not for anyone losing jobs to career or volunteer.
    I'm not even going to bother reading what you wrote. Im surprised you took such offense that you had to write 3 paragraphs.

    P.S. I did it knowing it would **** LaFire off, but thanks for the "pathetic excuse of firefighters" comment. I'll put that on the mantle too.

  12. #12
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    Really trying to hold my tongue here.

    Anytime a VFD closes and is replaced by a career department or career members are hired in a VFD it's a loss, not a gain, for the fire service.
    Once again.. you fail miserably. Why is it a loss? The community gains a fire department who's cannot "pick and choose" what calls they go on and can be there within the timeframe established by NFPA 1710.

    Call me anti-career, but the bottom line not only is the volunteer fire service the roots of the fire service, and should be preserved at all costs when possible, but it is also the most cost effective way to provide service is small communities.

    In addition, in many cases when a larger career department annexes a surrounding district, 2nd and 3rd due resources often must come a significant distance to support that one, lone station on the fringe, which in the long run does a disservice to the residents.
    Really? What if the annexing FD moves into the station that is already there?
    That shoots your premise all to hell...
    Last edited by DeputyChiefGonzo; 06-12-2011 at 10:31 PM.
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  13. #13
    Forum Member FyredUp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deluge059 View Post
    Its called a joke. Im not for anyone losing jobs to career or volunteer.
    I'm not even going to bother reading what you wrote. Im surprised you took such offense that you had to write 3 paragraphs.

    P.S. I did it knowing it would **** LaFire off, but thanks for the "pathetic excuse of firefighters" comment. I'll put that on the mantle too.
    Yeah, well it wasn't in the least bit funny and I am not buying for one second you meant it as a joke. So take your phoney righteous indignation and try to sell it elsewhere.

    By the way, you obviously did read it if you know I said you were pathetic.

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  14. #14
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    Yeah, well it wasn't in the least bit funny and I am not buying for one second you meant it as a joke.
    The instant I read his comment, I knew it was a satirical jab at LAFE. Man, don't get so spun up.
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  15. #15
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    ...not only is the volunteer fire service the roots of the fire service...but it is also the most cost effective way to provide service is small communities.
    The population of the county in which this is occurring is a little more than 900,000 people.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    In addition, in many cases when a larger career department annexes a surrounding district, 2nd and 3rd due resources often must come a significant distance to support that one, lone station on the fringe, which in the long run does a disservice to the residents.
    We've done annexing without any issues. If anything, the residents are happier knowing that they have 24/7 fire and EMS services. As for the 2nd and 3rd due companies coming in, instead of them coming in as a late MA run, they are auto dispatched with that "lone" station.

    I don't see where you get that it becomes a "disservice" to the residents, when their protection has been upgraded.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    In addition, in many cases when a larger career department annexes a surrounding district, 2nd and 3rd due resources often must come a significant distance to support that one, lone station on the fringe, which in the long run does a disservice to the residents.
    You cannot honestly be saying it takes longer for the 2nd or 3rd up career station (which was likely tapped out at the same time as the first due....depending on the original nature of the call) to get there, as opposed to tapping out another volly house, having them respond to the station, get geared up, and then respond a comparable distance.

    Are you???

  18. #18
    Forum Member snowball's Avatar
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    He'll say anything to keep an argument going.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ATFDFF View Post
    You cannot honestly be saying it takes longer for the 2nd or 3rd up career station (which was likely tapped out at the same time as the first due....depending on the original nature of the call) to get there, as opposed to tapping out another volly house, having them respond to the station, get geared up, and then respond a comparable distance.

    Are you???
    In the cases that have occurred in this area, yes.

    In fact in at least one case, the city has now entered into an automatic mutual aid agreement with the fire district they annexed the property from to increase the response times of the 2nd and 3rd due units or provide tanker support the city does not have.

    Shreveport has annexed some pretty funky "islands" they simply don't have the resources to protect.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    Yeah, well it wasn't in the least bit funny and I am not buying for one second you meant it as a joke. So take your phoney righteous indignation and try to sell it elsewhere.

    By the way, you obviously did read it if you know I said you were pathetic.

    Have a nice day!
    I don't know how it is where you live, but where i'm at, firefighters are allowed to tell jokes.

    I lied, I did read it, and I hope you were joking too. Being that I wrote "The world is in alignment again" should have given a clue that it was a satirical post.

    Thanks BoxAlarm, I knew someone would get it

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