What do those numbers stand for on your vehicles?
Those numbers tell us several things about each specific vehicle and allow Central County 911 to dispatch and communicate with the proper vehicle. Lets take for an example our station number one pumper/rescue, it's number is "1914". The first two digits in 1914 represent Valley Park Fire District, Fenton Fire uses "13", Eureka Fire uses "24" and so on. The third digit in 1914 represents what station that truck runs out of, in this case, station number one. The last digit in 1914 represents what type of vehicle it is, a 4 represents a pumper/rescue, a 2 represents a ladder truck, a 7 represents an ambulance, a 3 represents a tanker truck, and a 9 represents special equipment, like a boat. That's how it's done, see if you can figure out our other vehicles.
What's the deal with the weird schedule firefighters work?
That is a good question, we do work very unusual hours. There are three shifts, A,B&C, and each shift works ten days a month on average. Now that sounds pretty nice, but when we say "days" those are 48 hour shifts, so that's ten days a month we don't get to have dinner or sleep at home with our families. It also works out to approximately 56 hours a week. The schedule is a rotating schedule so the days we work are always different. We work two days straight. (48hrs), then are off four days (96hrs), hence the schedule's name 48/96. Example... If C shift's first day of their rotation starts on a Monday, they would report to work at 7am Monday morning, and get off work Wednesday morning at 7am. Then would be off Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and come back to work for their next 48hr shift on Sunday morning. Clear as mud yet, sounds confusing, but you do get used to it. Thanks for the question!
Is there a difference between a fire district and a fire department?
Yes there is, a fire district is made up of a three person board of directors, who are re-elected every two years by the taxpayers. The firefighters and even the fire chief answer to the board of directors. A fire district has it's own separate tax base, and any change to that tax base or any kind of bond issue must be voted on by the taxpayers in our district. A fire department is part of that particular city itself, the firefighters and the fire chief answer to the mayor of that city. The tax base for that city is pooled together then split up among the fire department, the police department, street department and so on. So taxpayers do not directly effect what the fire department may or may not receive. Valley Park, Fenton, Eureka, and Pacific are some examples of fire districts. Crestwood, Kirkwood, Rock Hill and Glendale are some examples of fire departments.