Firemen respond when people need help.
But the Jacksboro Fire Department is the one asking for help.
Last Thursday auxiliary firemen Chris Wallen presented the board of mayor and aldermen with a two-page list of items the fire department needs.
The list consisted of 146 items.
Among the 146 items were items for the five items for the fire truck, three items for engine #1, 95 pieces of gear, 23 pieces of communication equipment, three items for the station, five items for training and 12 repairs to the station. With a lengthy wish list Wallen said the firemen could complete the labor if the board would pay for the supplies.
Among the communication equipment was a request for 10 portable radios with shoulder microphones.
This item goes beyond want, according to Wallen.
“This is a safety concern for the firemen when they are inside of a burning structure” he said.
Fire Chief Jason Shetterly said the department received two new radios recently as well as two sets of turn out gear at the cost of $3,000. “These items need to be replaced after five years of service,” said Shetterly. The major issues with the station are the back window needs to be replaced, the concrete in front of the bays has pieces missing out of it and bricks are coming loose on the structure, according to Shetterly.
Repairs to a fire truck were also on the list. This item was tabled. The board is going to conduct an in-depth assessment of the truck before proceeding. The board has applied three years in a row for a grant to purchase a fire truck, but has been turned down twice and has not received an answer yet this year, according to Shetterly. “Even if we are approved, it would be eight to 10 months before the actual delivery of the truck, the average cost of a truck is $200, 000,” said Shetterly.
“These requests are issues of need, not want,” Shetterly said. The department is still operational and is receiving assistance from the Caryville and LaFollette departments at this time. Shetterly said a possible solution to the problem would be to purchase a used truck for now.