Posts Tagged MABAS Division 2

QuadCom renumbering fire departments

This from Henry Gruba:

This document outlines the renumbering of the apparatus and stations of the West Dundee, East Dundee, Rutland Dundee, and Carpentersville Fire Department.  I hope it is of interest.  Henry Gruba
Quadcom renumbers fire stations in Illinois Quadcom renumbers fire stations in Illinois

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An excellent article describing the use of auto-aid

The Courier-News has an article which discusses the physical growth of the City of Elgin and describes how, through automatic-aid agreements the fire department provides service to all areas of their district.

If you live or travel at the edges of Elgin’s boundaries and you’re involved in an accident, need an ambulance or have a fire at your home, there’s a chance the Elgin Fire Department might not be the first responder on the scene.

And there are good public safety reasons for that.

The Elgin department has a number of agreements with other departments and fire protection districts to help ensure that the response to the emergency in question is as prompt as possible.

Elgin Fire Chief John Fahy explained that automatic-aid agreements are approved by the city council and allow for the closest unit, regardless of jurisdiction, to be dispatched to calls for services involving the fire departments or fire districts in question, along with the units from the area of jurisdiction.

Some automatic agreements have been long-standing, such as one between Elgin and the South Elgin & Countryside Fire Protection District. Elgin’s need for them grew as the city and other local towns expanded their boundaries farther out and in sometimes geometrically odd shapes.

That left public safety and public works departments with new areas to cover that could be a good distance from existing stations or headquarters.

In Elgin’s case, the city spread west in patches, as far north as Randall Road and Route 72 between West Dundee and Gilberts; as far south as Silver Glen Road near South Elgin and St. Charles; and northwest toward Pingree Grove. At the same time, to its east, new subdivisions in Bartlett and Hoffman Estates were built closer to Elgin.

As such, Fahy said, “We can’t cover things the way we used to do.” Automatic-aid agreements “are the future of meeting such community needs.”

Elgin now has automatic-aid agreements that are reciprocal in nature with no fewer than six other fire protection agencies, some Elgin has sought, some other entities have initiated.

Examples of automatic-aid agreements initiated by other departments with Elgin include one with the East Dundee Fire Protection District to cover the area north of Interstate 90 and off Route 25. That includes Max McGraw Wildlife Foundation and the Milk Pail Restaurant that are in fire district’s boundaries and Elgin’s area that includes the Lexington Inn and business sites off Brandt Drive.

Another is with the South Elgin district, in part so that a pocket of the district near Elgin Community College that is closer for Elgin to handle has faster initial responses.

Farther west, “Crawford and McDonald roads coverage is with South Elgin, as they have a station on McDonald,” Fahy said.

In recent years, Elgin has initiated automatic-aid agreements with the village of West Dundee and its fire department to handle the area north of Interstate 90 along Route 31. It includes hotels and an apartment complex that are in West Dundee, and a gas station and industrial and office space near St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Church in Elgin.

An automatic-aid agreement with Rutland-Dundee Fire Protection District is set up in part to cover north of I-90 off Randall Road. The area includes The Grove business area with its numerous restaurants and the Northwest Corporate Park behind it in Elgin. The village of Sleepy Hollow is just across Randall to the east, and the busy intersection of Route 72 and Randall Road is on the north end.

“We respond to Rutland-Dundee in Sleepy Hollow as well as to the Gilberts subdivision off of Big Timber in return for their 72 and Randall coverage,” Fahy said.

“Our automatic-aid agreement with the Pingree Grove & Countryside Fire Protection District is strictly west on Highland Avenue to cover Highland Woods and along Plank Road where the city annexed the Jack Cook Park.”

An agreement with the Huntley Fire Protection District “is exclusively for response on the tollway during construction. With the inability to cross over or the loss of exit entrance ramps, we respond westbound into Huntley’s district, and they respond eastbound into Elgin’s district. The construction is a two- to three-year project, so we will revisit that agreement once the job is complete,” Fahy said.

Fahy said another automatic-aid agreement may be in the works with the Bartlett Fire Protection District for the area around Bartlett and Spaulding roads, where there are industrial sites in Elgin and subdivisions in Bartlett.

On top of all that, local fire departments and districts also have mutual-aid agreements. Those involve major incidents in which extra units are needed. There is a predetermined set of responses, and such aid has to be requested as the emergency situation is happening, Fahy said.

The formal agreements have been set up since the late 1960s through the statewide Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS). Elgin is part of Illinois MABAS Division 2 (, which includes 15 fire departments or districts.

A prime example of MABAS in practice was the September fire caused by lightning at Village Pizza and Pub in Carpentersville, where at least eight fire departments or districts wound up assisting.

All this also points toward the difference between departments and districts.

Fire departments are part of a city or village government and are funded through municipality budgets. Fire districts levy their own taxes to pay for their operations and cover not only municipalities but also surrounding land that most often is unincorporated and/or undeveloped.

Complicating the issue are “paper districts,” Fahy said. Those exist only on paper and contract out for services, most typically from an adjacent body that has a fire department. They also are independent taxing bodies, with that money going to pay for the services provided. An example would be areas near West Dundee served by the village of West Dundee Fire Department.

In recent years, some paper districts have moved to become actual brick-and-mortar districts with their own staff and buildings. Those include areas that had been served by departments in Palatine and St. Charles that are now independent, Fahy said, noting that on Jan. 1, the Barrington and Countryside Fire Protection District began operating in an area that had been served by the Barrington’s village department.

Who gets paid

Either way, for someone who winds up in an ambulance, Fahy said, “Regardless of where the incident is, the department that transports the patient is the one who gets paid.”

In 2011, Elgin updated city ordinances, raising the rates for various fire services, including ambulance charges. It was the first change for the ordinances in 10 years.

“Prior to the 2011 ordinance change, the rates were adjusted annually as Medicare rates changed,” Fahy said.

For those transported who have third-party insurance, charges not covered by that insurance remain the responsibility of the patient. People who are covered under Medicare and Medicaid are not responsible for the unpaid balance, with the difference “written down,” Fahy said.

In 2010, revenue collected for Elgin Fire Department ambulance service was $1.4 million; in 2011, $1.431 million; and in 2012, $1.854 million. The estimate for 2013 is $1.85 million.

The charge for basic life support transport rose from $355 to $442.74 for Elgin residents and from $444 to $692.75 for nonresidents. Advanced life support Level 1 went from $422 to $525.75 for Elginites and from $528 to $900 for outsiders. Advanced life support Level 2 went from $611 to $760 for Elgin residents and from $764 to $1,135 for nonresidents.

The city also began to charge for ambulance mileage, measured from the location of the emergency to the hospital, at a rate of $10 per mile for anyone transported. Any such charges not covered by insurance remain the responsibility of the patient, as it had been in the 2001 ordinance.

Fahy noted that Naperville conducts an extensive survey each year comparing area ambulance service rates.

“Our resident rates are well below the average, and our nonresident rates are slightly above the average. This was by design,” Fahy said.

thanks Dan

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Fox River & Countryside Fire Rescue District update

Dennis McGuire, Jr. sent a link to an article in yesterday’s Daily Herald about the Fox River & Countryside Fire Rescue District hiring personnel.  Some excerpts:

Though the final staffing contract has yet to receive a vote, Fox River & Countryside Fire/Rescue trustees now have an employee roster they believe rivals or surpasses any other local fire department.

American Emergency Services completed the hiring of the district’s fire and ambulance personnel. Of the 21 full-time employees, 18 are certified to work as both firefighters and paramedics. The remaining three will have the same credentials upon completion of paramedic school. The department will employ 10 paid-on-call firefighters with lesser training as basic EMTs and two firefighters with paramedic certification. Including additional part-time staff, the district will have nearly 40 employees in the fire department.

Trustees announced Monday night the department is now a member of MABAS (Mutual Aid Box Alarm System) Division II, which includes communities such as South Elgin, Elgin and East and West Dundee among others.

Trustees also said discussions are under way for auto aid agreements with South Elgin and Pingree Grove.

(Fire district President Jim) Gaffney also said he plans on having further discussions with St. Charles to see what assistance the two fire departments may be able to provide each other in the future.

Gaffney refused to answer any questions about the district’s impasses with Campton Hills and South Elgin on the progression of construction on the district’s new fire houses in those communities. Both communities have issued stop work orders to the fire district in recent weeks. Gaffney said those notices won’t slow down the fire district.

“We’ll be ready to go at midnight on May 1,” Gaffney said.

The entire article can be found HERE.

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East Dundee FPD is added to the site

East Dundee Fire Protection District

The East Dundee fire station had an addition built in 2006. Bill Friedrich photo

In MABAS Division 2 which incorporates Kane County, The East Dundee Fire Protection District has been added to the site. Bill Friedrich submitted the images to create the page for the current department. Their fire suppression apparatus is all by Alexis and their ambulances are from Medtec. Two of their current suppression units are on HME 1871 series chassis and the pumper/squad was built on an American LaFrance Eagle chassis.

East Dundee Fire Protection District HME Alexis pumper tanker

In addition, Bill also submitted his images representing East Dundee’s past apparatus. These were combined with submissions from Larry Shapiro to build the East Dundee historic gallery that features several images including a 1934 antique.

East Dundee Fire Protection District antique brush truck

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Bartlett first department posted in Division 2

Bartlett FPD patchThe Bartlett Fire District covers the Village of Bartlett as well as unincorporated Hoffman Estates and portions of Wayne Township. As such, their district is within two different counties; Cook and DuPage. Bartlett is dispatched via DU-COMM, but is a member of MABAS Division 2. Bartlett has three stations, two of which staff an ambulance and an engine, while the third station has a jump company responsible for a tower ladder, 3,000-gallon tanker (tender), and a brush truck. The rigs have been painted black over red for a number of years now, but previously they were bright yellow. Bartlett currently has a 1993 Seagrave engine that has been decommissioned which was originally delivered yellow and is now black and red.

The newest apparatus are three Pierce Velocity units. Prior to that are two E-ONE units which were preceded by a pair of Seagrave engines. In the 1980s and prior years, Bartlett (known then as the Bartlett and Countryside FPD) purchased Howe and Grumman engines.

Barltett FPD Pierce Velocity engine

Bartlett FPD Seagrave engine

A 1993 Seagrave TB30DF 1000/750 TM (sn 78589) which has been decommissioned and is reportedly for sale. This unit was originally painted yellow. Larry Shapiro photo

Bartlett FPD Seagrave engine

Engine 612 was the original name for this unit when it was delivered to Bartlett in 1993. This was the second of two similar units in Bartlett, the first of which was delivered in 1991. Larry Shapiro collection

Bartlett FPD Ford Grumman engine

Engine 618 was one of two twin units delivered in 1982. These were both built on Ford C8000 chassis with 1,000-GPM pumps and 750-gallon water tanks. Grumman had purchased Howe and these were labeled as Grumman FireCat units. Larry Shapiro colection

Bartlett FPD Hendrickson Howe engine

Prior to the two Ford/Grumman engines, Bartlett purchased a pair of these Hendrickson 1871S/International/Howe TM engines. Each carried 750 gallons of water and had a 1,000-GPM pump. This unit was delivered in 1977 and the sister unit was delivered in 1973. Pictured here is Bartlett's old fire station which was across the railroad tracks from the main station. The building is now home to the Hanover Township Emergency Services. Larry Shapiro collection

Bartlett FPD Hendrickson Howe engine

Shown here at Station 1 on Oak Avenue, Engine 612 was a 1973 Hendrickson 1871S/International/Howe 1,000-GPM TM unit with 750 gallons of water. Unlike Engine 613, this unit had high side compartments. Larry Shapiro collection

Bartlett FPD Ford Howe engine

Going back even further is this classic 1963 Ford C950/Howe engine #616. Like the units that were purchased later, this had a 1,000-GPM pump and carried 800 gallons of water. Larry Shapiro collection

Another interesting unit is the 1997 HME/US Tanker 3,000-gallon tender. This is one of three area tankers on HME chassis. The other two belong to the Palatine Rural FPD and the East Dundee FPD. All three of these worked the same fire in Barrington during September of 2008.

Bartlett FPD US Tanker

Bartlett Tender '2' on-scene in 2008 at a 2-11 Alarm fire in Barrington. Larry Shapiro photo

East Dundee FPD Palataine Rural FPD HME US Tanker

Two HME/US Tanker units (East Dundee FPD and Palatine Rural FPD) working side-by-side at a 2-11 alarm fire in Barrington during the summer of 2008. Larry Shapiro photo

Bartleet FPD HME US Tanker

Seperated by one tanker (a Freightliner/US Tanker from South Elgin) are the three area HME/US Tanker units in staging at the Barrington 2-11 in June of 2008. Larry Shapiro photo

One final note of interest is the 8,000-gallon, tractor-trailer tanker that preceded the 3,000-gallon HME/US Tanker unit in Bartlett. The tractor was an L-Series Ford.

Bartlett FPD 5,000-gallon tanker

The 8,000-gallon Bartlett tanker is shown here operating at a 3-11 alarm fire in Barrington's district at Pepper Road and Route 14 on the 10th of November, 1994. Larry Shapiro collection

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