Fire Officials Looking to Make Improvements

By: Autria Godfrey
By: Autria Godfrey

August 26, 2006

Over 170 fire & rescue workers as well as elected officials came together for the 3rd Annual Virginia Public Safety Summit on Saturday hoping to better their combination volunteer & career fire and rescue programs

"Here in Albemarle we've done a really good job of marketing our product. We have a very well funded system here, a very engaged volunteer force. We provide free training and free equipment. You show up, we'll help you. You provide the enthusiasm, we'll give you a job to do," Fire Chief Eggleston said.

Representatives from all over the commonwealth took part in the 2-day event, including county administrators and city officials. Some of which are relying on the model here in Albemarle County to help launch their own combination response system

"We don't want to do away with volunteers, we want to keep the volunteer system thriving and in a class 'A' position, but we need some support staff in order to help them out," Shenandoah County supervisor Dennis Morris said.

Directors of the summit rely on feedback from both volunteer workers and career fire officials to create the best possible combination emergency response system.

It's the continuous communication that has created one of the most successful operations right here in Albemarle County.

"I think we've got really a good system here, we just are really looking for ways to improve and build upon that because it's our vision to become the model combination volunteer and career system," Eggleston continued.

The localities participating Saturday were not only from Virginia, some fire officials and city representatives came all the way from Texas and Wyoming.

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