Members of the Bradley County Fire Board discussed the need to make sure all its trucks are in working order and the need for new volunteers at its meeting Tuesday.
On Nov. 12, Bradley County Fire-Rescue will have its Insurance Service Office audit, and the ratings given to the department that are used by insurance companies to determine what rates they will charge.
Fire Chief Troy Maney said the department needs to work out some issues concerning the number of available working vehicles but is otherwise on its way to being prepared by going through a checklist and completing paperwork.
“We think we’re on schedule for everything,” Maney said.
However, he said a truck-related issue should be addressed before the audit takes place.
Maney said the interim chief who held the position before him purchased a truck that was “really pretty” but was later found to have significant problems, namely with the water pump used to fight fires.
The truck was found to still be under an extended warranty, and the pump could be fixed. However, Maney said the truck’s repairs would normally cost about $25,000. He said he worried that the truck would have problems in the future and asked members of the board if they would consider trading it in for a new truck.
The board decided that the truck’s pump should be repaired, and members would look into different options after the audit.
Board members also discussed the need for more volunteer firefighters.
When a full-time firefighter left not long ago, a volunteer was chosen to take his position. However, Maney said he was the last one in the pool of applicants interested in becoming full time.
Board Chairman Dana Burgner said it would be good to recruit more volunteers with the thought that there could be some applicants waiting in the event that another position opens.
Training for volunteers happens year-round, during every month except December and January. New volunteers take part in a 16-hour orientation class and attend a 64-hour “rookie school” before taking part in a 240-hour training that includes working with live fires.
During the meeting, members also re-elected Burgner to serve as the board’s chair for a second term.
In other business, Maney noted that the department had nearly completed all its scheduled visits to local schools this semester to teach children about fire safety. However, he said all the fire stations will be handing out candy to children who stop by to trick-or-treat on Halloween.
There was no new business other than to discuss who would be serving on the board from that point foward. Nothing definite was decided.