04/27/10 127 W, 1 I - + 13 - 9 Update on New Morrisville Fire Station

FireNews finds this Cary News article with the latest on Morrisville's plans to replace Station 1. The 55 year-old structure on Morrisville-Carpenter Road has been planned for replacement for years. The contract for the $3 million facility, to be located around the corner on Town Hall Drive, is expected to be awarded as early as today. The 13,000 square-foot station will be nearly twice the size of their current quarters. The building will take 10 months to building. New apparatus is also planned, as the Fire Chief mentions three quints that'll be spread across the town's three fire stations. That's two more aerials for MFD. More information as it is known. Read the article. For extra credit, see if you can date the below photo.

So is Morrisville going with the quint concept? If so, is that really a good move with Cary on their back door? I can see the new fire station being built, but purchasing three quints?
DroppinDollars - 04/27/10 - 18:00

Yea, Morrisville is thinking about the quint concept. They have a ISO rating of 3 but are trying to get a 1. With the quint concept they can cut out half the people they would need to hire for that rating. On a side note, out of all the towns in the county, Morrisville has the fourth largest tax base with only 6.8 square miles which translates into lots of tax revenue. Cary wants Mo’ville, Mo’ville does not need Cary. The towns might merge, but not for many years. Just my opinion.
Interesting - 04/27/10 - 19:18

H2O - 04/27/10 - 20:45

Isn’t Morrisville 1st-due at RDU? I was under the impression a department with an airport in it’s jurisdiction had to provide fire services at the airport e.g. Charlotte in order to receive a Class 1 ISO rating.
RescueRanger - 04/27/10 - 20:53

Congrats to Morrisville for this much needed improvement!! Also, RDU is an “authority” so it is actually a city unto itself under NC statute. RDU utilizes a blend of auto-aid and contract responses from Morrisville and Raleigh for structural incidents (unsure if Bethesda and Durham too).
A.C. Rich - 04/27/10 - 21:21

Interesting discussion on the quint concept in Rochester, NY. They’re going away from the concept, changing to a more traditional Engine & Truck department. http://mcfw.blogspot.com/2007/06/quint-m..
Discussion - 04/27/10 - 22:14

Very interesting discussion! They moved to a quint + midi-pumper model in the 1970s as a way to save jobs. Looks like they still have three (?) such combos still running.
Legeros - 04/28/10 - 07:55

How is Richmond’s system working? Do you think it’ll work better in a smaller town? Doesn’t seem like sacrificing manpower and equipment is worth a better ISO rating. Changing from a 3 to 1 by switching to quints? I’m not a Morrisville tax payer, but if they were planning to switch to a quint concept, why did they just purchase a new engine? Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate what everyone does, and as a Wake taxpayer, I support everyone having the best equipment to get the job done safely.
Charlie3 - 04/28/10 - 08:58

This is how I understand it. Morrisville needs to add a bunch of people. Right now they have 4 people assigned to each station (three stations = 12 people and Batt. chief). They run 2 engines and one ladder. They need to add people, by going to the quint concept they have to add less people then they would need to if they went with engine/ladder concept. That would be three quints and three squads they would have.
Interesting - 04/28/10 - 09:32

Alright guys-someone is going to have to explain a bit more clearly. Mo’ville runs 3 apparatus with 12 personnel. That equals 4 per apparatus, same as we run. What is this supposed need for addt’l. personnel tied to in their quest for the vaunted “1”? Too few stations? Too few apparatus? Insufficient personnel on 2nd alarms? Just what is the grand plan? Perhaps someone from Mo’ville admin. can enlighten as opposed to us guessing out here.
Goose - 04/28/10 - 10:57

I agree with Goose. I am confused as to how all of this is working. How does switching to the quint concept add more people? By my figures, and I am no means a math person, a person is counted as a person regardless of whether they are riding a quint, engine, or bicycle. Maybe ISO uses a different system, so if someone could please enlighten me I would be most grateful.
H20 - 04/28/10 - 11:05

Ask and ye shall receive. Here’s a response from MFD command staff, to which I inquired earlier this morning, with some information about the quint concept as we are discussing:

“The last entry sums up our situation pretty good. Under the current traditional fire protection model according to ISO, we need 3 engines (each with 4 people) and 2 aerials (each with 6 people). If we switch to a quint concept according to ISO we only need three quints (each with 6 people). We currently have 4 people assigned to each station and one Battalion Chief. So with the quint concept will can reduce our total needs from 24 people on duty to 18 people on duty plus one Battalion Chief.

Another major factor in our decision to pursue the quint concept is the current development trend of higher density. It is becoming common practice in Morrisville for new development and redevelopment to consist of multiple story buildings with retail or commercial on the first floor and residential on the top floors. This type of development creates greater challenges for firefighters. We believe the quint concept enables us to more effectively deal with these challenges.

We studied cities across the country that tried the quint concept. We learned a lot about the cities who used it with success and with the cities who considered it a failure. We believe our town with the geographical boundaries clearly defined is the perfect environment for the quint concept. We are in no danger of out growing the quint concept like some cities did. We also learned it is important to have a support vehicle (small or medium rescue) at each station to run the medical calls in an effort to reduce the total runs on the quint.

I hope this helps with the discussion.


Todd Wright
Fire Chief
Morrisville Fire/Rescue”
Legeros - 04/28/10 - 16:25

Anyone know if St. Louis is still in Quint mode? Last I knew, and this was years ago, they replaced most if not all their engines with Quints and then bought Tillers for their aerial companies.

So, riddle me this… Quint, I like it – anyone who knows my assignment history knows I have been on the true RFD Quint since it came to the city in 2000, but we never utilized it as the “Quint Concept”, and that was to split the crew to do both jobs off of one truck, arriving at the same time. We ran it as E-23, and now as Ladder 1. So, you buy 3 quints..How do you maintain the correct assignments on arrival, between Engine Co. duties and Ladder work, and if there is a manpower issue – sick, vacation, etc.. what gets cut out? And if you cut down to 3 quints, will there still be adquate coverage with only 3 rigs on the road? What about dedicated, larger Aerials such as the MFD tower ladder? Or would the MFD Quints be 100’ rear mounts, etc..

I dont know much about sucess stories or failures on it, I hope it works out, seems like an innovative and good idea for Morrisville. Detroit did it at one station that was isolated by railroad tracks, and I believe it worked well for them.

Good Luck MFD!
Meier - 04/29/10 - 23:00

@And’...I believe St. Louis is still in quint mode. Richmond is as well, but from talking to a few guys from Richmond, they wished it was a “traditional” fire department. I’m happy riding “the rocket”, as I like to call it. It’s perfect for our territory with tight apartment complexes and long driveways we can actually get into (Old Well last year). Plus, the crew is pretty dang sharp ;D . I’m just glad we’re a traditional F.D., versus a quint concept one.
Silver - 04/30/10 - 00:02

So if I understand correctly-based on apparatus type (quint instead of eng. and ladder)-you now only need 18 personnel to do the job of 24 personnel? At least in the eyes of ISO? If so-what does NFPA have to say on staffing levels for this scenario?
I see the same job needing to be accomplished-but less personnel “required” and available on scene to do so as explained above. And-I see a dept. able to meet ISO rating requirements cheaper- fewer personnel equals fewer dollars spent.
Goose - 04/30/10 - 10:38

As I view it, once you submit and accept to do this job with fewer people, you’re hard pressed to ever get that number of personnel back because you’re showing you can do without. As said by a Richmond guy, a quint concept is made up of confused pieces of apparatus, as you always pull up on a ladder truck but sometimes do engine work. Then, some other guys are truly doing truck work….
Silver - 05/01/10 - 15:01

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