Mutual Aid: with a little help from friends

facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

No fire department can do it all. Sometimes when the unforeseen occurs, a department needs a little help. And mutual aid agreements between town fire agencies assures that the help is there when really needed.

Such agreements vary throughout the region. Rural/Metro maintains three fire stations within the unincorporated community of San Tan Valley. These firefighters go to all fires in the community but bill for services to homeowners that don’t subscribe (San Tan Valley has no declared fire district). But Rural/Metro will come to the aid of surrounding areas when needed, even joining Florence to fight a wildfire south of that town last year, according to Colin Williams, a Rural/Metro spokesman.

The Superior Fire Department has an automatic mutual aid agreement with its counterpart in Queen Valley, both of which have a core of professional firemen supported by a group of volunteer firefighters. Under the pact, when either department gets a call concerning a house or commercial structure on fire, the call is immediately forwarded to the other department and equipment from both simultaneously head for the fire.

Even in Kearny, which has an all-volunteer fire department, a mutual aid agreement is in effect with Winkelman-Hayden to assure that all the major conflagrations are efficiently extinguished, said Kearny spokesperson Laura Snow.

The latest wrinkle in mutual aid is the valley-wide automatic aid agreement, in which computer technology is employed to assure fire engines are dispatched where and when they are needed. In Queen Creek, for instance, under this agreement, should extra help be required, firefighters from fire stations in Chandler or Gilbert with be automatically notified. As the central computer keeps track of where all fire stations in participating towns are located. Should another fire be reported in an area of Queen Creek where the local fire station’s personnel are already busy fighting a fire, the system will alert the nearest fire station (perhaps in Gilbert) to travel into Queen Creek to extinguish the second blaze.

Participating towns in the valley-wide agreement – in addition to Chandler, Gilbert and Queen Creek – include Apache Junction, Guadalupe, Maricopa, Mesa, Scottsdale and Tempe.

James Hodl (43 Posts)

James J. Hodl is a career journalist who has worked for newspapers, magazines and trade journals. A graduate of Southern Illinois University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism, Hodl began his career as a reporter with the Palatine (IL) Herald and the Morton Grove (IL) Review before becoming editor of the trade publication Appliance Service News. In recent years, Hodl has had articles published in Consumers Digest, Good Housekeeping, Home Remodeling, Kitchens & Baths and Salute; and has contributed to trade publications serving the home furnishings, restaurant and casino markets. A native of Chicago, Hodl relocated to San Tan Valley in 2013.


facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
facebooktwitterby feather

Comments are closed.

  • Stories Just Posted

    Public Works Assesses San Manuel Storm Damage

    10 hours ago
    by

    FLORENCE – On Thursday, Pinal County Public Works crews spent their work day cleaning up and assessing the damage from Wednesday’s major monsoon storm that hit the town of San Manuel.


    Re-Confirmed: Nomination for Oak Flats Historic Site designation returned

    18 hours ago
    by

    This week Copper Area News received numerous phone calls from readers claiming that the nomination application for Oak Flats to become a historic site was not returned and was still under


    Gosar, Kirkpatrick weigh in against Oak Flats on National Register of Historic Places

    18 hours ago
    by

    The letter below was sent to the Keeper of the Record at the National Parks Service by Arizona Congressmen Paul Gosar and Ann Kirkpatrick urging the Keeper to send back an


    Kearny police officer arrested in Tucson

    July 30th, 2015
    by

    On Wednesday, July 29, 2015 at approximately 2:15 p.m., Kearny Police Officer Gonzalo Mata was arrested on Domestic Violence/Stalking charges.


  • Stories Just For You

    Manuel Ramirez named principal at JFK Elementary

    July 28th, 2015
    by

    Superior Sun There’s a new man at the helm of the John F. Kennedy Elementary School in Superior.


    Copper Alliance hosting summer pie social

    July 28th, 2015
    by

    The Superior Copper Alliance is hosting a pie social this Friday, July 31, 2015 at 6:30 p.m. at the home of Bill and Nancy Vogler, located at 502 Church St.


    New backpacks for Superior kids

    July 28th, 2015
    by

    Students at Superior Schools last week participated in a Back to School Night. They had a chance to meet their teachers, reconnect with friends and even score new backpacks and school


    Experiencing Bat Night at Kannally Ranch

    July 28th, 2015
    by

    San Manuel Miner How much do you know about bats? Those tiny creatures made famous and infamous by a good guy and a not-so-good guy?


  • Facebook

  • [Advertisement.]
  • Arizona Headlines & Current Weather