For Immediate Release
Fire Department Awarded $1.2 Million Grant
The Springfield Fire Department (SFD) has been awarded a federal Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant for $1,243,000. This grant will be used to hire nine additional firefighters. The department will begin the process of hiring the firefighting personnel necessary to open Fire Station 13, which will be located at the corner of West Chestnut Expressway and Duke Avenue on the west side of Springfield. Several years ago, the SFD identified the need for a new station in West Springfield. The SFD is not able to meet its benchmarks of having an initial unit on-scene within six minutes and forty-two seconds, and a full effective response force on-scene within eleven minutes and fifty-four seconds to this area. In addition, the Insurance Services Office (ISO) identified the need for a fire station in the area. Placing a station in this area will significantly improve response times to the area, and will make an improvement in the community’s ISO points helping place Springfield solidly in a Class 2 rating.
The City has already purchased land for the future station; however, the City did not seek funding for the design or construction until staffing was in place. This grant will fund nine of the fifteen personnel needed for the new station. Until the remainder of the staffing is secured, and the fire station is constructed, the personnel will be assigned to the districts with the highest call volume and those that are currently covering residents of the west side of Springfield.
According to Fire Chief David Hall, “The need for Station 13 has been clear for many years; however, due to the fiscal and economic climate within the City, we have been unable to phase in staffing as we have done in the past. This grant will allow the City to work to address this underserved area.”
This program is a competitive grant process through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Congress approved a total of $742.5 million in funds for this program.
For more information contact: Fire Chief David Hall, (417) 838-4730.