East St. Louis, Illinois is one of those fire departments that is extremely underfunded and understaffed. Like Highland Park, Michigan and some other departments we have featured, it responds and handles structure fires with a very small number of overworked and poorly equipped firefighters. As bad as it is, Rob Schield tells us it’s about to get a lot worse. Click here to watch this nicely produced video showing what Rob and his fellow firefighters face on the fireground and throughout the the city. Here’s some of what Rob wrote about the video:
With over 150 firefighters that used to protect this city, only 53 remain due to budget cuts. Unfortunately the East St. Louis fire department is facing laying off 22 more firefighters in May 2013 which is extremely dangerous.
Most fire departments respond up to 5 engines, 2 Chiefs and 15 firefighters to a house fire. Right now only 2 engines and 6 firefighters respond to a structure or house fire in East St. Louis EVERYDAY which is well below the number required by the NFPA. This is not to mention the other fire calls that come in. If layoffs occur, that number could fall to 3 firefighters and 1 engine which will be catastrophic.
Also on STATter911 …
- Helmet-cam: House fire in East St. Louis, IL. – October 21, 2012
- Helmet-cam video: Garage fire with propane tanks, wires down & chained dog in East St. Louis, IL. – November 14, 2013
- Helmet-cam video: Partial collapse at East St. Louis, IL house fire. – October 7, 2013
- Helmet-cam video: House burns twice, a year apart, in East. St. Louis, IL. – May 4, 2013
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