It has come to my attention that some questions regarding the future of West Pulaski Fire Department in the Wye Mountain/Little Italy area have come up. Let me reassure you, the community’s safety is of the utmost importance to me and of West Pulaski Fire Department. Fact: There has been and will be no plan to dissolve WPFD Station #4 that protects Wye Mountain/Little Italy area north and west of Lake Maumelle.
It is no secret Station #4 is woefully short of volunteers right now. Recognizing this, we have two strategies in place to ensure adequate coverage. First, West Pulaski Station #3 (Hwy 10) and #5 (Pinnacle Valley) both automatically respond to all calls in Wye/ Little Italy. Secondly, we have mutual aid agreements with surrounding departments – Lake Maumelle Fire Department, Bigelow Fire Department, Williams Junction Fire Department, and Harris Brake Fire Department to also respond when needed. These departments are automatically dispatched to any reported structure fire. In addition, they can be called for ANY emergency. These two strategies remain in place to provide a prompt response and coverage all day, every day.
But we still want and need volunteers for the local station. We need you! Volunteers do not need any prior training to join – we will provide all the training needed to become a certified volunteer firefighter. West Pulaski provides all the gear and equipment as well. The requirements for membership include: residing in the district or close vicinity, being physically and medically capable, and passing a background check. Giving back to the community with like-minded people is a rewarding experience.
You are welcome to stop by Station # 4 at 35911 Hwy 300 on Tuesday nights at 7:00 PM. Or contact any of the following: Battalion Chief Mark Shoemaker: 501-442-5629, Chief Scott Joblin: 501-830-7227, or Deputy Chief Jason Rogers: 501-821-9320 option 2.
WPFD activated with the Pulaski County Tanker Task Force last night for additional water supply on a large commercial structure fire on Beverly Street in Jacksonville, AR. The task force is called to bring extra water for fire suppression when the water supply from the fire hydrants may not be sufficient in supply volume or additional location availability is needed for a fire attack. Water tankers are summoned in a single action under our agreement with the tanker cooperative that most Pulaski County fire departments support. We are happy to bring the water when needed and help our neighboring departments in the central region.
What if you wake up tonight with a strange pain in your chest. It’s difficult to breathe and you’re suddenly sweating profusely. You or your spouse fumble for the phone to get help quick. The 911 operator tells you help is on the way after you confirm your address. Help is being dispatched and some of the firefighter/EMT’s live nearby so surely they will be there soon, right? While you wait, you think about your house and wonder if it is as easy to find as you get more stressed. It is easy to find for most folks, they all know generally where you live, don’t they? You get mail every day and your Amazon packages from UPS and FedEx keep showing up so it must work, right? Does it really matter that the numbers are faded, worn, or missing on your mailbox? Is it worse that your mailbox is nowhere near your house on a shared road? Is it raining, too?Too often help is dispatched quickly for such calls but responders have trouble finding a good address number to tell us which driveway to follow or the correct house on a shared driveway The time of day, weather, and daylight can’t always be in your favor. You may have seen vehicles with flashing lights turning around hurridly seeking an address that is poorly marked. It happens often enough. Turning around takes a bit of time for responders when YOU are anxiously waiting for a lifeline to arrive. Even if you have good address numbers to find YOU, do your neighbors have good numbers to keep us from accidentally driving down THEIR driveway seeking your location? We hope you all have good numbers. We do.If you aren’t sure, we hope you will evaluate your address numbers very soon. Make sure they are displayed well from any direction of travel. Make sure your mailbox flag doesn’t cover the few numbers that matter most and ask yourself if they are effective enough to get help quickly. Reflectivity is a bonus. Those decorative bronze, brass, or black address numbers on a brown wood post don’t reflect any light at night. It just slows us down to try to ready them.You get to decide how fast someone can help you or a family member in an emergency. A little bit of thought now can help us find you in the future. Finding you quickly or help us move on down the road to our dispatched address is the goal. If you need some help, please call our Address Ambassador Marcella Grimmett at 501-912-4211 to get one of the great Red and Reflective 911 Address Signs (pictured below and located all around our district) to make sure you are ready for an unexpected emergency. They are always unexpected. The cost for the sign is $15 or you can make your own for less. Do what works best for you so you can be found quickly. To those of you that already have great address numbers, THANK YOU!Stay safe.
Grass fires have kept us hopping lately. We completely understand your desire to start spring cleanup by burning some leaves and brush. We want to do that also ourselves on our own properties. One reason we are not doing those burns right now is that things are too DRY and sometimes get too WINDY and that leads to loss of control when the weather changes the direction of your burn. While there is no Burn Ban in place right now, we must advise you to use caution when you intentionally set fire to your property (Burn Pile, Leaf Pile, or whatever). Be safe, not sorry. Take care!
A fire extinguisher is a great primary tool to knock down a fire early before major damage occurs. How many fire extinguishers do you have in your home (you can count vehicles also) and where did you place them for quick access? We recommend having one in reach in any cooking, mechanical or other area where flammables (fuel or oil based liquids) are stored. Tell us what you have done to be ready!