Fire Department Overview
The Mount Vernon Fire Department was established in 1849. The first paid firefighters were appointed in 1891. Initially, there were three fire stations located at the intersection of Mansfield Avenue and Curtis Street, on West Vine Street between Mechanic Street and West Street, and on North Gay Street between the Methodist and Episcopal churches. In 1914, the City closed two of the stations and concentrated its equipment and workforce to the Gay Street location. The fire department was moved to the Northeast corner of Public Square in 1918 so that better access to the entire city could be obtained.
In the late 1950’s it became apparent that the facility on Public Square was no longer sufficient to house the fire department. Plans were implemented to build a new station. In 1965, the fire department was relocated to 207 West Ohio Avenue into a building that was once a boat sales agency. The building was heavily damaged in the flood of 1959, but updates were made and the facility was repaired so that it could house the apparatus and manpower.
With the railroad traffic that was prevalent at the time, a second fire station was needed in the South end of the City. The Elmwood fire station was built on Ames Street in 1967. The fire department operated out of these two buildings until 2000 when the new facility located at 200 West Gambier Street was completed and able to be utilized.
Today, the Mount Vernon Fire Department employs 40 people housed in the two locations mentioned above. The department offers fire suppression, emergency medical care, fire prevention, and public information services to the citizens of Mount Vernon.
From the Chief’s Desk
Mount Vernon Fire Department run volume continues to grow. We answered a total of 4,832 emergency runs (3,777 EMS and 1,055 fire). With over 78% of the run volume generated by EMS calls, just over $788,000 was collected from EMS billing; which supplemented the City’s general fund. We are busy with emergency runs but also our many other events and education. We participated in many hours of training, public relation events, hydrant maintenance, and fire prevention activities and are the Knox County Coordinator for Toys For Tots. With the help of the public and the Marine Corps Reserve we provided Christmas for 821 local kids in 2016.
In 2016, several large ticket items were purchased on the Fire and EMS side. The items purchased are for training, rescue equipment, and safety improvement. Also purchased, personal protective clothing, an inflatable rescue boat, computer upgrades, a rescue saw, a pressure fan among other items. A new 2016 F450 Medic with a new Stryker power cot and loading system was purchased. A second Stryker power cot and loading system was purchased with funds from a grant and installed in the 2015 F450 Medic.
The MVFD was one of 23 fire departments to be awarded the Mission: Lifeline EMS-Gold Achievement Award. We received the Silver in 2015. The AHA recognizes the critical life saving role EMS provides to the overall success of STEMI (myocardial infraction). MVFD is proud to be a leader in the cardiac care of our community.
The Mount Vernon Fire Department looks forward to the challenges that 2017 will bring and is always striving to help better serve our community.
Chief Chad Christopher