New York City Fire Stations

fire stations

A fire station is a building that houses the equipment and personnel of a local or regional fire department. They may be located in large cities, small towns and villages, or even in forestry areas. In the United States, they are usually named after the fire company or apparatus that is housed there.

A career fire station is staffed by professional firefighters and provides full-time, 24-hour emergency service to the citizens of the area it serves. These fire stations are funded by the tax dollars of the residents.

The FDNY responds to an array of incidents, from single-family homes and commercial buildings to office complexes, hospitals and schools. These include fires, explosions, hazardous materials incidents, transportation accidents, medical emergencies and high-angle rescues, along with confined space incidents and trench rescues.

There are five borough commands and nine firefighting divisions that operate under each borough command, with a battalion chief leading the unit in each of these divisions. There are also 29 volunteer fire companies that provide part-time or volunteer service to the FDNY, and these groups work alongside the career firefighters under a set of operating procedures.

In New York City, all FDNY personnel and units are required to be able to communicate with dispatchers in all boroughs in a variety of ways. This includes telephone alarms, verbal reports, and radio communications.

Phone alarms are the most common method of reporting a fire or an emergency, and they can be transmitted by the fire alarm dispatcher or by the New York Police Department (NYPD) 9-1-1 operators. The 911 operator will then relay the call to the fire department’s dispatchers.

Radio alarms are similar to telephone alarms, but a fire alarm is broadcast over the public address system of the building or structure where it originated from. These radio alerts can be heard at all levels of the firehouse or company and are usually the primary means of alerting firefighters to emergencies.

The radios are used to notify units of their arrival at an emergency or to report additional information that the dispatcher needs to know before they arrive at an incident, such as the type and length of line stretch or hose, the height and width of a standpipe, and any unsafe conditions at the location of the fire or other emergency. Depending on the type of emergency, it may be necessary for the firefighter to communicate directly with the supervising fire alarm dispatcher.

A brush fire unit is a vehicle that carries fire extinguishers, hoses and other specialized equipment to battle blazes in areas where the ground is too steep or rocky for conventional vehicles to access, such as cliffside areas, mountains, canyons, rivers or wooded secluded areas. It is typically a 4-wheel drive, all-terrain vehicle.

These firefighting apparatus are equipped with a self-contained breathing apparatus, protective clothing, a backpack extinguisher, and other equipment. They are designed to be fast and effective, and are capable of reaching and extinguishing a fire in minutes.

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