Columbia Fire Station Operating Understaffed

3 years 9 months 3 weeks ago September 28, 2013 Sep 28, 2013 Saturday, September 28 2013 Saturday, September 28, 2013 9:12:00 PM CDT in News
By: Rachel Karcz, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Columbia's second-busiest fire station operates fully staffed only 35 percent of the time, according to the city's fire marshall.

Brad Fraizer said, "We're all aware that we need additional staffing. But the firefighters that you see on the trucks every day will work with what we're given and do the best we can with the resources that are available to us."

There are times when Fire Station Two can only send one of its two trucks out on calls.

The station responded to 1,841 calls last year, only a few hundred less than the city's busiest station, Fire Station One.

The staffing issues started when the economy took a nosedive, just after a new station was added in 2010. Budget limits meant some of Station Two's firefighters had to start working at that new station.

"It weighs heavy on the hearts of the firefighters that serve here when they can't give the customers the service they deserve. It weighs on us," said Boone County firefighter Danny Spry Jr.

The issue of staffing is being felt by fire stations across Columbia. On days when Station 2's second company is not operating, the staff answers to all their calls with one fire truck. If a second call comes in while that truck is in use, firefighters from other stations respond. This means firefighters will have to drive further to get to the emergency, extending their response time. While this puts added stress on other Columbia fire stations, Fraizer said the real stress lies in the citizens in need.

"In the fire department and emergency services in general, it's all about getting there as quick as we can to address whatever emergency we're being called to," he said.

To help keep staffing at the current 35%, the city used a grant to fund five positions in mid-fiscal year 2013. The fire department hopes to lock in those five positions for next year. Frazier said the department eventually hopes to get Fire Station Two running full time.

"That's our goal, and our job as a fire department is to help answer questions for our elected officials and let them know what we believe is best suited to the community with regard to the fire department's ability to respond to emergencies," he said.

Columbia's City Manager, Mike Matthes said the staffing issue can't be solved over night. "It going to take 20 years to actually fix the problem," he said.

In order to fully staff Station Two, officials would need to hire six additional firefighters and fund up to $150,000 in overtime costs.

 

More News

Grid
List
ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis police used pepper spray to disperse a crowd protesting outside the city's medium-security jail... More >>
15 minutes ago July 22, 2017 Jul 22, 2017 Saturday, July 22 2017 Saturday, July 22, 2017 1:36:20 PM CDT in News
CHESTERFIELD (AP) — The former administrator of a Chesterfield pediatric clinic is charged with stealing more than $115,000 from the... More >>
19 minutes ago July 22, 2017 Jul 22, 2017 Saturday, July 22 2017 Saturday, July 22, 2017 1:32:35 PM CDT in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Greene County authorities are looking for nine people who are believed to be involved in an alleged... More >>
26 minutes ago July 22, 2017 Jul 22, 2017 Saturday, July 22 2017 Saturday, July 22, 2017 1:25:05 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Kansas City police are investigating three shooting deaths that occurred within four hours Friday. The... More >>
1 hour ago July 22, 2017 Jul 22, 2017 Saturday, July 22 2017 Saturday, July 22, 2017 11:53:23 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A plant fossil chipped out of a cliff on the grounds of Park University in northwest... More >>
2 hours ago July 22, 2017 Jul 22, 2017 Saturday, July 22 2017 Saturday, July 22, 2017 11:35:32 AM CDT in News
NEOSHO (AP) — A police officer has fatally shot a man who raised a gun during a traffic stop in... More >>
7 hours ago July 22, 2017 Jul 22, 2017 Saturday, July 22 2017 Saturday, July 22, 2017 6:26:00 AM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A suspect is dead after allegedly pointing a gun at St. Louis police officers who were... More >>
7 hours ago July 22, 2017 Jul 22, 2017 Saturday, July 22 2017 Saturday, July 22, 2017 6:17:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Fifty-eight law enforcement agencies across Missouri are cracking down on speeding from Friday to Sunday. They will stop... More >>
18 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 7:18:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - A mural that represents a bright future from a troubled past will be painted this summer on the... More >>
20 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 5:47:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The Show Me States Games began officially with a torch run ending at Shelter Insurance in Columbia. ... More >>
20 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 5:37:00 PM CDT in News
PUTNAM COUNTY - The Putnam County Sheriff's Department issued an Endangered SILVER Advisory for a missing adult on Friday, July... More >>
21 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 4:40:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The Missouri Department of Higher Education awarded 18 Missouri colleges and universities with their Default Prevention Grant for... More >>
21 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 4:15:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY- The Missouri River Regional Library is now renting out Wi-Fi hotspots. The hotspots fit in the palm of... More >>
21 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 4:09:00 PM CDT in Continuous News
BOONVILLE - Prosecutors have charged Cooper County Clerk Darryl Kempf with stealing and receiving stolen property after he allegedly bought... More >>
22 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 3:47:00 PM CDT in Continuous News
JEFFERSON CITY - Accidental drowning has been ruled the cause of death for two teens who jumped from a bridge... More >>
22 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 3:35:31 PM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A water main break is causing problems for several businesses and commercial buildings in downtown St.... More >>
22 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 3:22:09 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - The city manager proposed a budget Friday morning that include cuts due do to low sales tax growth.... More >>
22 hours ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 3:22:00 PM CDT in News
WASHINGTON - White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer resigned Friday shortly after President Donald Trump decided to name a new... More >>
1 day ago July 21, 2017 Jul 21, 2017 Friday, July 21 2017 Friday, July 21, 2017 12:38:00 PM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 98°
2pm 97°
3pm 98°
4pm 97°
5pm 98°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

6:00a
The 146th Open Championship
2:00p
2017 Tour de France
3:30p
The 146th Open Championship
1:30p
Paid Program
2:00p
The King of Queens
2:30p
The King of Queens

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
American Ninja Warrior
9:00p
Dateline NBC
7:00p
Family Guy
7:30p
Family Guy
8:00p
Bob's Burgers
8:30p
Bob's Burgers
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld