Mt. Vernon Register-News

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January 3, 2014

JFPD responds to fewer calls in 2013

MT. VERNON — Jefferson Fire Protection District responded to 982 calls for fires, medical emergencies, motor vehicle accidents and mutual aid incidents in 2013.

The number of calls JFPD had in 2013 was a decrease from year ago figures, when the department had a record number 1,072 calls. Two years ago, the department had set a record of 927 calls, according to department information.

“We’re happy the numbers are down,” said Chief Mike Huntman. “It shows that no one is getting hurt.”

There were no fire-related deaths or injuries involving the department this past year.

“There were no civilian or firefighter deaths, and that’s always a good thing,” said Huntman. “We want to keep the people in the county as safe as we can.”

JFPD had 22 structure fires in 2013, resulting in property loss of $480,300. The total loss for all fires totaled $840,985. The department’s largest property loss of $400,000 occurred on Dec. 18 at the residence of Dana Barnum in the 15000 block of East Lynchberg Road.

JFPD, which serves more than 200 square miles in Jefferson County, responded to just over 100 motor vehicle accidents in 2013, resulting in 69 injuries. The fire department used its extrication equipment four times. The department responded to 114 EMS calls as a result of motor vehicle accidents, excluding vehicle accidents with injury, and 506 calls in which some medical assistance was needed.

The department responded to 26 calls for grass fires, four calls for rubbish fires, and four vegetation fires. The department also responded to five fires in which chemicals and/or gas leaks or spills were involved.

Three fires were considered suspicious in nature, accounting for $137,000 in property loss and a total loss of $271,000.

“It’s very important for us to have these statistics,” Huntman said. “The numbers are given to the state and the National Fire Incident Reporting System. It helps particularly when there are hazardous products that cause fires, which could result in recalls. This is a good system to keep track of everything and keep everybody safe.”

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