SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


New Fire Station
By Darlene Breitkreutz


September 02, 2011
Friday PM

For the ladies asking questions and discussing the new fire station, I'm hoping I can shed a little light on this subject. Having just retired from the fire department after almost 24 years I can assure you that when I started my career there we were looking for a place to put the new fire station. It was a top priority for the then Chief Dave O'Sullivan. We could have purchased Ketchikan Welding for $1 million, we could have purchased Ireland Transfer on Stedman, we could have purchased the old McKay Marine property but the ideas kept getting shot down. So now, waiting until the last minute before the old fire station sinks into the ground and the roof caves in, they were limited to space available.

Yes it may be an eyesore right now but when it's complete it will blend in beautifully with the downtown area. Big, yes it looks pretty big but if you saw how everything in crammed into the other stations you may understand why they needed more room. And the concern about pulling into traffic is no different than where it is right now, I can't tell you how many people have jumped out of the way off of the Main St. location, and this includes locals too not just tourists.

I can also explain why the engine responds with the ambulance. In this day and age, patients are sicker, and heavier, and they don't always live on flat ground, and often times there's multiple patients or multiple calls. This makes it pretty hard for two people to handle certain situations. When a person is not breathing, even the four or five people on shift are not enough, there's CPR going on, meds to push, physician to contact, and a whole lot of other things. I guarantee that if one of your family members stops breathing, you will welcome all the help you can get. The full staff of KFD is trained in advanced life support as well as firefighting so if the engine shows up first they can handle any medical emergency. A quicker treatment is most likely a better outcome. This goes for the outlaying departments too, more help is way better than not enough in a true emergency.

I hope this helped. Biased, yes maybe a little, but it's because I understand the operations.

Darlene Breitkreutz
Ketchikan, AK

About: "Life long resident of Ketchikan"

Received August 30, 2011 - Published September 02, 2011



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