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Bellevue Firefighters use an unexpected approach to reduce response times

Posted at 6:27 PM, Oct 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-25 19:27:03-04

VILLAGE OF BELLEVUE, Wis — At the Village of Bellevue’s Village Board meeting this week a unanimous vote was made for a major change, at the Village of Bellevue’s Fire and Rescue Department.

The board approved a three-year contract with Bellevue firefighters to staff the department at all times with personnel. The Fire Chief, Jack Mlnarik says the move will significantly cut response times for firefighters arriving to emergencies. Mlnarik says that when his department is staffed around the clock come this coming January, it will eliminate drive times for his on-call employees who are called in for emergency response situations.

“People have to come from home which takes a considerable amount of time, and it almost doubles if not more our response time,” says Chief Mlnarik.

On average the department can respond to call within about five and a half minutes when the department is staffed at the building. But, the Chief says it can take upwards of 14 minutes to get to a house call when employees have to be called in.

Chief Mlnarik says there will be no additional cost to taxpayers on the account of the transition. He adds that a negotiation with AFF Local 141’s Union made the process doable.