Terre Haute Living August 2018 - Page 21

HEROES Jack-of-all-trades From burning buildings to medical emergencies, fire, EMS responders always on call WORDS: LEAH R. SINGER PHOTOGRAPHY: JOSEPH C. GARZA I Terre Haute Fire Department firefighter Clint Wiley trains with a deck gun on June 27 at the Indiana Firefighter Training Center District 7 facility. At left is Terre Haute Fire Department firefighter Hunter Barnes. n 1853, the township of Terre Haute was incorporated as a city. Two years later, the Terre Haute Fire Depart- ment was established as a volunteer organization. It stayed that way for 39 years when it became a fully paid department with 50 firefighters. Today that number has grown to 153 emergency responders, which includes both firefighters and paramedics. The Fire Department – with its eight responding stations – specializes in fire prevention and suppression, rescue, haz- ardous material spills, interstate car crashes, building and property inspection, and water rescue. The department also houses Terre Haute’s Emergency Medical Services, which includes ambulance transport and paramedic services. Fire Chief Jeff Fisher said responding to fire and medical emergencies has a unique challenge in Terre Haute: the rail- roads that run throughout the city. This difficulty will only continue to grow as train traffic is expected to double in the next five to seven years. “We need to have fire stations strategically placed throughout the city so we can respond to any emergency and get there within the mandatory 3-minute response time,” said Fisher, who has served as chief for the past 11 years and (812) 232-7611 been in the department for 39. “If a station dispatches a unit and it then gets railroaded, we must be able to send a differ- myhospicevna.org ent set of responders out in its place.” All it takes to be a hero is a giving heart and a selfless attitude. Telephone 812.232.7611 Website: myhospicevna.org tribstar.com/terrehauteliving August 2018 • Terre Haute Living 21