Why a new firehouse is vital to the community

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I am a District One firefighter, and wanted to address why our firefighters (who all live locally) unanimously support the Fire and Emergency Services Facility bond proposal this November.

The critical upgrades that we need are 1) All apparatus at one station 2) Space for better apparatus.

As a small department, we have just enough responders to staff one station at a time.

That means that when apparatus leave our facility to respond to an incident, a firefighter needs to leave the Osburn station to get another apparatus where it is stored in Wallace, Gem, or Mullan.

This wastes time and leaves a dangerous window if another incident occurs before the next apparatus can be reached.

This actually happens several times every year, and we do not like relaying to 9-1-1 callers that our response time will be delayed by ten minutes or more.

The need for better apparatus is not a fanciful wish-list.

Our best apparatus are regrettably outdated. Our most recent engine from 2013 is only marginally more effective than the next newest from 1991.

This is simply because more capable engines will not fit in any current station.

This is substandard compared to any similar department.

I encourage all eligible voters to educate themselves and their families regarding these important issues.

Due to the nature of our job, we have spoken to thousands of our residents and visited hundreds of homes, and try to remain aware of challenges our residents and their families are facing.

Based on the critical state of our current capability, we urge our tax payers to earnestly consider this proposal for the safety of our community.

CHARLOTTE BINKOSKI

Osburn

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