Kan. firefighters’ union fights to keep fire truck out of reserve
Wichita firefighters are worried that putting Engine 6 in reserve, as the city plans to do, would impact the safety of the residents
WICHITA, Kan. — A firefighters’ union is fighting to keep a fire truck that the city wants to take out of service.
KSN reported that IAFF Local 135 plans to pass out flyers and urge residents to contact city leaders in an effort to change their minds on their decision to move Engine 6 to reserves due to an expiring grant.
"Engine six has been there for some time, but by grant money and that grant money expires at the end of the year," Wichita Fire Department Fire Marshal Stuart Bevis said.
Union president Matt Schulte said the truck, which is “way out east,” would “be replaced with a squad,” but union members worry that the loss would impact the safety of Wichita residents.
"Those are some very large homes and schools out there," Schulte said. "There's been talk that it only makes a few alarms a day, but if it's your house on fire or your loved one that's in cardiac arrest, you'll want us to be there as quickly as possible and that's why that engine is out there."
Station 6 is the only firehouse in the city that has more than one fire truck. In the past year, the station received 676 calls.
Bevis added that adjacent stations will be able to cover the area and help with major calls if the truck is put into reserves.
"That's what we look at as a department and as a city, how are we best able to move our resources around to serve the citizens," he said.