City forms a new Fire Corps Program; volunteers no longer respond from Finn Hill Fire Station #24
Kirkland’s Fire Reserve Program, administered through the Fire Department, has long been supported by two dozen dedicated volunteers who have provided emergency medical aid support and non-emergency support at fire scenes. Reserves responded from the Finn Hill Fire Station (#24) in tandem with the professional firefighters. Beginning January 1, 2012, the valuable role of reserves supporting the community is going to be changing through the creation of a Fire Corps Program. With their changing role, reserves will no longer be housed at the Hill Fire Station which will house back up equipment. The Fire Corps volunteers will assist with community education about fire and injury prevention and emergency preparedness. They will also be trained to assist the community during a disaster. Fire Corps is a program indentified under the guidelines of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Citizen Corps program. To learn more about joining the Kirkland Fire Corps program, contact Captain Bill Hoover, Kirkland Fire Department, at 425-587-3727 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The future use of Fire Station 24 has not been determined at this time. Citizens who typically visit the station for blood pressure checks can receive them at the Holmes Point Fire Station #25, located at 12033 76th Place NE.
As part of the Fire Department’s continued efforts to improve service to the community, the City recently initiated a process to conduct site identification and evaluation for a new fire station in Finn Hill. Station 24 will be considered in that study. To keep the community informed and to gather public input on the new fire station location, a series of workshops will be held. The first workshop is scheduled for Wednesday, January 18 at 7 p.m., Finn Hill Junior High School, 8040 NE 132nd Street, Kirkland. For more information about the proposed new fire station, visit www.kirklandwa.gov/finnhillstation.
Since being stationed at the Finn Hill Fire Station, reserves responded to an average of 150 calls each year. They have staffed the station in the evening only and responded with professional firefighters on medical calls and to support fire incidents. With the change in the volunteer program and the formation of the Fire Corps, reserves will no longer be deployed from the fire station. Although reserves currently do not and will not provide fire suppression or rescue services, volunteers will still provide non-emergency support at fire incidents. Reserves that join the Fire Corps program will also be able to keep their Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification.
Under the Fire Corps structure, volunteers will have the opportunity to become involved in a wider range of activities. They will be able to become Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) members and instructors, can be involved in community prevention and preparedness programs, become disaster response team ready, or volunteer to be a photographer at department training events and fire incidents. The program will work with the City’s Office of Emergency Management.
For more about the Fire Corps program, contact Deputy Chief Helen Ahrens-Byington at email@example.com or 425-587-3603.