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June 25, 2017
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Updated: Jun. 25 (06:00)

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Proper Fire Protection
Updated On: Apr 04, 2013

According to the City of Wilkes-Barre's Study on Fire Protection there should be:

Four Engine Companies with three Fire Fighters, One Ladder Company with two Fire Fighters, the Assistant Chief, and two Fire Fighter/EMT driving the Ambulances on duty 24/7. 17 total.

NFPA 1710 states there should be a minimum of 16 Fire Fighters on scene within 8 minutes of the start of the fire for safe and efficient fire operations.

Working with these numbers the City should have:

Fire Headquarters: 20-22 East Ross Street Center City

F-6 - Assistant Chief,

Engine 1 - Captain and two Fire Fighters

Truck 6 - two Fire Fighters

Hollenback Station : North Washington Street Parsons

Engine 2 - Captain and two Fire Fighters

Medic 5 - Fire Fighter/ EMT and Civilian Paramedic

South Station : High Street South W-B

Engine 3 - Captain and two Fire Fighters

Medic 3 - Fire Fighter/EMT and Civilian Paramedic

East Station : E. Northampton Street Heights

Engine 4 - Captain and two Fire Fighters

Total: Assistant Chief, Four Engine Companies, Ladder Company, two Medic Units (A.L.S.); 17 Fire Fighters

In aprox. 2003, the Fire Department employed eighty-eight (88) Fire Fighters and maintained 17 Fire Fighters per shift. As of December 1, 2012 there are only fifty-three (53) Fire Fighters due to retirements and eleven (11) forced lay offs.

 The lay offs and "voluntary retirements" caused each group to lose four (4) Fire Fighters. Still there will be a need to call out overtime to maintain eleven per shift because of the lay offs. Completely ignoring their own study and NFPA 1710 these are the unsafe staffing levels. Note: East Station/ Engine 4 closed and out of service when the staffing was reduced to 14. Engine 3 is put OOS when the group has less than 14. Seeing that the Groups only have 12 or 13 it cannot be maintained even if there is not a single Fire Fighter off on vacation, sick, bereavement, injury, etc..

PROPER STAFFING SHOULD BE:

F-6,

Engine 1,

Engine 2,

Engine 3,

Engine 4,

Truck 6,

Medic 3, and Medic 5

17 Fire Fighters


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