Fire Chief Jimmy Chew is right in asking for more firefighters for the Stephenville Fire Department. Increasing minimum staffing from six to eight should be fully supported by mayor and council, however, minimum staffing should be increased to sixteen firefighters per shift operating as three four person Engine and Ladder companies and two medic units.
Four person staffing for Engine and Ladder companies is necessary to be able to rapidly assemble adequate manpower for structural fire attack and search and rescue operations. The cost could be offset by a lowered ISO insurance rate.
The growth Stephenville is experiencing in both residential and commercial requires that the fire department grow to serve the citizens and visitors at the same high level as they always have. Letís give them the manpower they need to effectively and safely operate in a growing city.