Craig Rural Fire Protection Training Facility

On Thursday the Craig Rural Fire Protection District Board reviewed plans to bring a state of the art live fire training facility to Craig. Board President Byron Willems discussed the project at the build site located on Hospital Loop Way a few hundred yards from The Memorial Hospital of Craig. Above is an excerpt of the interview.

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Training tower, live fire building to be constructed near TMH

By the end of summer, the Craig Rural Fire Protection District could have a state of the art facility to provide its volunteers with live fire training in Craig. During its regular monthly meeting Thursday, the Fire District Board of Directors reviewed plans to construct a training tower and live burn building on Hospital Loop Way, a few hundred yards southwest of The Memorial Hospital of Craig. The board unanimously granted the planning team, consisting of Byron Willems, fire district board president; Chris Nichols, board secretary/treasurer; and Craig Fire/Rescue Chief Bill Johnston, a few weeks to review the planning documents before rendering a final decision. According to those plans the square tower will be five industrial stories, or 100 feet tall. It will feature staircases and large empty rooms that can be customized for a variety of firefighting scenarios.


Insider1313 5 years ago

Craig fire burned a building last year, He said they haven't done it in 4 to 5 years. Also who can predict the winds. Even if they are sure how can it be shut down in time to not affect the hospital, it's not 100 percent safe. Dosen't the Fire Department say "Safety First always". This is not the whole story, they aren't telling us everything we need to stop this.


xrsareus 5 years ago

Insider1313, What is the "whole story"? What are "they" not telling us? If you know for sure what you claim, you should share with the rest of us, what you know so we can help you stop this. In other words "put up or shut up"..


Insider1313 5 years ago

Xrsareus I like your fire, and you are right I need to tell you what I know. First, the tax payers voted down (about 5-10 years ago) the first time the Fire Department wanted to do something like this (second station mentioned in the video), so Craig Fire came back with a 10 year plan and a mil levy increase and got it. They argue that they are on track, but I you can judge for yourself; they aren't even close in my book. You can ask for a copy of this but they don't make it easy to get it. So they asked for money and then didn't do what they said they would (my opinion). Now they say they are going to do this project (they have close to a million or so), but they don't have all the money they need, they only have the money to start. They aren't even considering doing a mil levy decrease; because they think the money could be used later on. I say if they need the money they should have to ask the people that are paying their bills. Second, wind patterns on hospital hill are unpredictable and you can't tell me that burning things next to a hospital is a good idea. But they say they will use propane if the winds are bad. Propane is expensive and the tax payers are the one footing the bill. So what happens when the smoke goes into the hospital, who gets hurt then? We aren’t talking about the camp fires we all like, the video mentions chairs and other material. These can give off toxic gases, that is why the firefighters where breathing protection. So in this light is it good to put this next to the hospital? But even better where is the smoke going to go instead of the hospital, Shadow Mountain trailer park or maybe to the gas stop on the corner. Third, the ISO rating that they say is going to help us lower taxes is very sketchy. The best way to help an ISO rating is put a building up, put a couple of trucks in it and an office and call it a station, not a burn tower. The ISO rating is based on response to a scene, hydrant flow, equipment and a list of other things, not just training. We don’t meet hydrant flow testing requirements, which the fire department can do (but don’t have to). This could help the ISO rating and only take time (volunteer department), but it’s not as fun as a burn tower. Fourth but not final, this is not up for a vote. This is going to happen with the current people in charge. They aren’t asking us anything, they are going to do this. They have the money to start and they are going to continue to spend 500 to 600 thousand dollars a year after until this project is finished. There is no stopping this unless the board is recalled and the chief is relieved of his command. I do have more but I think you get the idea. I want people to ask and argue, that is what needs to happen. The fire department is a great bunch of people but financially this is a bad idea. Just because they save your house or they are real nice to you doesn’t mean that they get a blank check.


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