Sublette County Fire Board Meeting Ė Reporterís Notes
by Dawn Ballou, Pinedale Online!
January 22, 2008
The Sublette County Fire Board met for their regular monthly meeting in Daniel on Monday, January 21st. This is a meeting for the fire chiefs and administrators from the six volunteer fire departments in the county. Attending were representatives from the Pinedale, Daniel, Big Piney/Marbleton, Boulder, Bondurant and Kendall Valley VFDs. Most of the discussion centered on routine fire department business. However a couple of other interesting subjects came up in the discussions. Below are some of the highlights that came out of that meeting:
- COUNTY FIREFIGHTERS: There are approximately 125 volunteer fire fighters in the county. All departments are in need of more people to volunteer and who are willing to help out. For more information about the time commitment, training and skills requirements, contact any of the fire chiefs.
- TRAINING TOWER: There is talk of getting a training tower built somewhere in the county. This would be a multi-story tower that is designed to represent a building and allows firefighters to train for structure fires in a controlled setting. The building would have special burn rooms which are used for training purposes. Two possible locations were discussed. One possibility is on county-owned property north of Daniel. The second possible site is on the county-owned property where the Marbleton/Big Piney landfill is currently located off of US 351. Where ever it is located, it is expected the facility will be utilized for training by fire departments from other areas, bringing revenue to the nearby towns for lodging, meals and gas. A committee was formed to look into this further.
- NEW PINEDALE FIRE STATION: There is interest at the county commissioner level to build either another fire station for Pinedale someplace or a small satellite station in the BloomField subdivision on the west side of Pinedale. Pinedale now has several buildings that are more than two stories tall, but firefighters are very concerned they donít have any fire trucks or ladders to be able to fight fires in those taller buildings. They want to buy an aerial lift truck so they can adequately fight fires. The present fire hall building is not large enough to house the vehicles they currently have and the new large truck, if they get it. A satellite station would allow the department to put the trucks out on the other side of town, where some of the volunteers live, and have the added advantage of reducing response time for those volunteers coming from that side of town. The concept of the satellite fire station was met favorably by the group. Another angle on the discussion, however, was the possibility that the county wants to build a completely new station for the fire department so they can move them out and the county can take over the current fire hall and convert it over to expansion space for the courthouse. A committee was designated to look into options for the Pinedale VFDís building and equipment needs for the future.
- NEW DANIEL FIRE STATION AND TRUCK: There was brief discussion about a new building to house the Daniel Fire Station at some point in the future. The department is also hoping to purchase a new fire engine and is researching options. They would like to get a pumper truck that would be used for wildland/urban interface type fires. Their old truck breaks down and isnít as reliable as it needs to be.
- TRAINING Firefighters use winter to do training and complete course work and classes for additional certifications and qualifications training. Their busy season for fires is typically in the summer when wildland and brush fires can keep them busy for weeks. All year-round they train for and respond to structure fires, vehicle crashes, chemical spills, and gas-field accidents.
- UPDATE ON THE KENDALL VALLEY VFD NEW BUILDING: Construction continues on the new fire station for the newly-formed Kendall Valley Volunteer Fire Department. It is being built in the Upper Green, north of the Moose-Gypsum road, on the east side of US 352. The building is closed in. Electrical and plumbing are in place. The floor is put in. It is expected to be completed around May of this year.
Anyone interested in learning more about becoming a volunteer firefighter in their community is encouraged to contact the Fire Chief for that area.
PINEDALE: Alvin Mitchell, 307-367-4550 (fire hall)
BIG PINEY/MARBLETON: John Ball, 307-276-3409 (fire hall)
BONDURANT: Richard Thomas, 307-733-2180 (fire hall)
BOULDER: John Blaha, 307-537-5454 (fire hall)
DANIEL: Ben Franklin, 307-859-8400 (fire hall)
KENDALL VALLEY: Festus Krause, 307-367-6842