Growing N.H. City Welcomes Man with Codes Expertise

Aug. 20, 2013
Rochester Deputy Chief Peter Cutrer is looking forward to making the city safer.

Aug. 20--ROCHESTER -- A growing city needs a top team to keep pace with it, which is why when the deputy chief position in the Rochester Fire Department opened up this summer with the retirement of longtime employee Dominick Bellio, the department brought in Peter Cutrer, an experienced fire marshal with years of commitment to the Sanford, Maine Fire Department.

"It's a very important position in the city, especially right now when Rochester is seeing so much growth. He stepped right in an hit the ground running," said Chief Norm Sanborn, Jr. of Cutrer's ability to pick the position up quickly.

Cutrer's quick fit had a lot to do with his six years in the same position in Sanford, during which he served as a firefighter and EMT for Oxford County in Western Maine. He spent ten years with departments in the county after working as a fire protection specialist for six years.

"Peter comes here with a bulk amount of knowledge of NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) codes as they relate to building construction and life safety, having that experience and depth of knowledge helps us get him moving in the community," said Assistant Chief Mark Dupuis.

It's not just his work experience that has made him such a great fit for the department.

"He's only been here for a few weeks, but he's already getting along with everyone," said Sanborn.

"I'm hoping that we continue to grow together as a family," said Cutrer of his coworkers in the Department.

"Now he's basically just getting acclimated to this city," said Dupuis.

"I really look forward to assisting the business community and the citizens and promoting a safer Rochester," said Cutrer.

His position oversees fire prevention in the city, including public education, plans and reviews of buildings, sprinkler and fire alarm systems, and any life safety issues.

"I made a shift from wanting to be in fire suppression to wanting to work on fire prevention, after we had a fire in my son's bedroom when he was just a few months old," said Cutrer. He said it was an electrical fire that started because an electrician had improperly installed an outlet.

"I was able to put it out immediately, but it was the turning point," he said. "It made me realize, 'wouldn't it be great to get there before the fire started?' That's when I looked into becoming a fire marshal."

When he's not working on fire prevention, Cutrer likes to spend time with his family.

"I enjoy being a father and spending time with my family," he said. He likes to go fishing, hunting, and camping. "I'm an avid outdoor enthusiast."

Still, he enjoys his work as well.

"When he's here, he's very into his work," said Sanborn.

Cutrer, who got into firefighting after watching a neighbor's garage catch fire and feeling the itch to help out, said, "I really enjoyed seeing what the firefighters offered to the community."

"When your help somebody out its pretty gratifying. My motto is that its better to give than to receive," he said.

"Community service is important for me," said Cutrer, who volunteers his time teaching public speaking skills and literacy.

Cutrer saw the position as "an opportunity to work with a great expanding city such as Rochester."

He's been with the department for less than a month but he said its already been "very busy, fast-paced and exciting.

"There are so many projects happening in Rochester right now that it's an exciting time to come into this position," he said.

Copyright 2013 - Foster's Daily Democrat, Dover, N.H.

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