Meridian Fire Department opens 6th station

The Meridian Fire Department has opened its sixth station, which officials say will reduce emergency response times in south Meridian.

The department, along with city officials, hosted on Thursday a grand opening for Station No. 6. The public was invited to tour the facility following remarks from fire officials and the mayor. Officials also held an uncoupling ceremony, a fire department tradition similar to a ribbon-cutting, when two sides of a fire hose are disconnected.

“This is an absolute terrific day for the city of Meridian, our citizens, our visitors and especially the residents and businesses in south Meridian,” said Meridian Fire Chief Mark Niemeyer.

The city broke ground on Fire Station No. 6 last March. The station was originally expected to open in fall 2018, but design and construction were delayed. The 10,229-square-foot fire station cost $5.4 million, and construction was completed by Engineered Structures Inc., a Meridian-based company.

The new station, located at 1435 W. Overland Road, is the second fire station in south Meridian, one of the fastest-growing areas in the Treasure Valley, according to the 2018 Development Monitoring Report from the Community Planning Association of Southwest Idaho.

“We’re excited about this location,” Niemeyer said. “It provides us great east, west, south and, in the future, north access.”

The department’s goal is to reach emergencies in five minutes or less. Its current citywide response time average, based on data from the previous six months, is 4 minutes 26 seconds, said Stephany Galbreaith, the city’s public safety public information officer. Officials hope Fire Station No. 6 will reduce the number of response times over five minutes in south Meridian, Galbreaith said.

Station No. 6 will house a battalion chief and an engine company, a three-person crew. The station includes design features meant to protect the health and safety of firefighters, especially from risks of exposure to carcinogens, such as smoke, soot, gases and other products caused by combustion, said the department’s Deputy Chief of Operations, Charlie Butterfield.

The layout of the fire station allows for better ventilation, through diesel exhaust removal equipment in the station’s apparatus bay, where the fire engine is kept.

The station has an isolated decontamination room where contaminated gear can be ventilated — the area also has a self-contained breathing apparatus washer, the first of its kind in the state, which allows firefighters’ air packs to be thoroughly cleaned of contaminants.

“The city of Meridian and the Meridian Fire Department are committed to the health and safety of our firefighters,” Butterfield said. “The design of this new firehouse is representative of that commitment, for the firefighters of today and the generations of future firefighters that will call this building their second home.”

Additionally, the station has a dedicated workout …….. Read More Here

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