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Tyler County Booster - Local News
Stories Added January 2011
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ty Publishing Company

Volunteer F. D. Notes...

Tyler County Booster

by Rowland Priddy Tyler County has started off with a tragic fire. Mr. Howard Jackson died in a house fire at his home on January 3. The home was a total loss. The Tyler County Firefighters would like to send their condolence to the Jackson Family. This was the first fatal fire in several years in Tyler County. The Woodville VFD and Ivanhoe VFD responded to the fire. We also had two other notable fires in the county this past month. The first was in the Warren area, it involved a single wide trailer that was not occupied at the time; it was being used for storage. It was a total loss, there was some fire damage to the main house before the fire was brought under control. The Warren VFD and Ivanhoe VFD responded to this fire. The other fire was in the Colmesneil area, it involved a garage, an upstairs apartment and an outbuilding they were all a total loss. Due to the prompt response of all departments involved the main house was saved. The Colmesneil VFD. Chester VFD, Shady Grove VFD and Woodville VFD responded to this fire. All the departments in the county responded to numerous other calls this month, pasture fires, wrecks, getting a tree out of the road, and other assistance to our citizens. The little rain we received helped the fire conditions from getting any worse. We still have not received enough rain to bring the fire condition status down from HIGH. Unless we receive more rain it will not take things long to dry back out and maybe a “burn ban” from being put back in place. I want to thank Judge Blanchette for explaining how a burn ban is put in place. As seen above at some fires more that one department responds due to the need for additional equipment or manpower. This is done through “mutual aid” agreements in place among the various departments. These allow us to support each other as needed. Some of these are automatic mutual aid agreements. An automatic mutual aid agreement is where when one department is called for certain situations, other departments are also paged out. For example, if Ivanhoe VFD is called for a structure fire in their area, automatically Woodville and Warren should also be paged out. If The Ivanhoe Department gets to the scene and finds that no other department are needed, they will notify the dispatcher that he may cancel the other departments and have them turn around. The same works the other way, if Woodville is called for a structure fire, Ivanhoe should be automatically be called. The idea is to have plenty of help en-route for a structure fire and then if it is not needed the other departments can be turned around. It’s much better to have manpower and equipment early, than have to wait for them to be paged out later. Every minute in a fire can make a difference. And being a rural area, we do not have fire hydrants around most of the county so water is always needed. When fighting a structure fire a pumper is able to pump all the water out of its tank in just a few minutes so we need all the tankers we can get to maintain the supply of water, there is nothing worse than trying to fight a fire and run out of water. Sometimes, the departments will get to a fire such as a woods fire and see that they will need more help. A call to the dispatcher that more help is needed lets the dispatcher page out the other departments that are needed. In case of outside fires, the Texas Forest Service may also be called. They have heavy equipment that the VFD’s do not have. For example, bulldozers, in a woods fire sometimes that is all that will stop the fire. We are all thankful in this area that all the fire departments work together and to not hesitate to come to each other’s aid. Remember if you have a fire get out, and stay out, call 911. and let’s get units rolling. Do not hesitate as I said “Every minute in a fire can make a difference”.

Polk County Publishing Company