Blazing ahead: City fire departments optimistic about reaching 2012 goals
by Kristal Dixon
kdixon@cherokeetribune.com
January 29, 2012 12:36 AM | 37721 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Canton Fire Department hopes to further promote its fire and weather safety house as part of its goals for 2012. Above: Canton Fire Marshal Roger Bailey talks about the safety training program the fire department teaches in elementary and preschools in Cherokee County.<br>Cherokee Tribune/Todd Hull
The Canton Fire Department hopes to further promote its fire and weather safety house as part of its goals for 2012. Above: Canton Fire Marshal Roger Bailey talks about the safety training program the fire department teaches in elementary and preschools in Cherokee County.
Cherokee Tribune/Todd Hull
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CANTON — Cherokee County fire departments are looking for 2012 to be a year in which they can maintain services and possibly offer new educational opportunities for the community.

Canton Fire Department


Canton Fire Chief Dean Floyd said he hopes to roll out a new weather safety house.

The house would be a state-of-the-art system and would allow for the department to conduct drills with constituents, Floyd said.

He also said the department seeks to utilize the city’s Code Red program, which alerts residents when events such as severe weather or water main breaks occur. It also wants to implement a multi-jurisdictional disaster drill and host statewide training in Canton.

Floyd also said he hopes the department will be able to maintain or even lower its Insurance Office Rating of 4.

The ISO system is used to rate how well fire departments serve their area. The scale runs from 1 to 10, with one being the best fire service. The ratings are used to calculate homeowners’ insurance costs.

Canton fire answered 2,848 calls for service in 2011, down from 2,959 in 2010.

Floyd said he’s optimistic about the city meeting its goals.

“We are going to meet these goals, and I think we’re going to serve the community the best we can,” he said.

Last year, Canton Fire installed a cistern system at its South Canton Fire station, which Floyd said was a “biggie” for the department.

Four 1,700-gallon cisterns were installed underground and tied into the fire station’s gutter system. The water collected will be redirected to flush toilets, wash fire engines and go into the irrigation system.

The chief also said the department installed automated external defibrillators at Canton City Hall and trained employees on how to use them, saw two of its fire fighters complete paramedic training, promoted Roger Bailey to fire marshal and installed laptop and wireless Internet capabilities on the city’s apparatuses.

“All our goals we accomplished were to better benefit the citizens of the community,” he said.

Woodstock Fire Department


The Woodstock Fire Department wants to focus on providing good customer service to its residents, Assistant Chief Jimmy Eley said.

Eley said that consists of returning phone calls to residents as soon as possible and responding effectively to fire and emergency calls.

In the fire marshal’s office, Eley said the department would like to work with developers to help them comply with codes and perform a life safety check in all commercial structures to make sure nothing will hinder safety inside a business.

Other goals include working with Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services to develop a common set of standard operating guidelines, implementing various training classes and continue to do community outreach.

Eley also said he wants the public to continue having positive interactions with the departments’ employees.

“What makes a organization great is not the big objective, but how you interact with people every day,” he said. “When we interact with people at these events, we really want to have positive interactions with the public.”

Woodstock fire had 3,827 calls for service in 201, up from 3,519 in 2010.

Eley said the city also was able to hold onto its ISO rating of 3 last year, which he said was “a pretty good accomplishment” considering the city’s more than doubled in population since the last time it was evaluated in 1993.

The city also started a bike patrol in which it collaborated with Outspokin’ Bicycles and GasSouth to purchase mountain bikes to respond to emergencies on the Taylor Randahl Memorial Mountain Bike Trails.

Eley said the department realized it needed a faster way to respond to traiaccidents throughout the city since its traditional equipment isn’t designed to navigate the technical terrain.

The department reached about 8,000 people through its fire safety initiatives and experienced positive interactions with its Facebook page.
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