What if you swerve to avoid a deer in the Feather River Canyon and your car veers into the river?
What if you fry chicken for dinner and a grease fire ignites your kitchen?
What if you clean leaves from your gutter and fall off the ladder?
Chances are the first person you will see is a volunteer first responder with the local fire department.
In Plumas County, we rely on and perhaps take for granted the services these volunteers provide day or night, seven days a week. Beyond that they give up their own evenings and weekends to attend training sessions to continually improve their skills. There are many instances when they put their own safety on the line, as evidenced in last week’s fire at Sierra Pacific Industries when a firefighter suffered an injury.
These volunteers aren’t paid, and the minimum we can do is ensure that they have the adequate equipment and infrastructure to help them in their work.
Residents of the Quincy Fire Protection District are being asked to pass Measure A, which proposes a $96 annual assessment be added to property tax bills for the next five years.
Residents and property owners need to vote “Yes.”
It’s a small price to pay ($8 per month) for the benefits that they receive — and it could actually save them money. That’s because having adequate fire protection affects homeowners’ insurance rates.
A local, well-equipped fire department that adheres to state and federal standards drives an area’s ISO (Insurance Services Organization) rating and the subsequent rates an insurance company will charge.
Property tax dollars are no longer enough to support our fire departments and pancake breakfasts can’t possibly offset operational costs, as well as the ongoing need to update and replace equipment.
Under the leadership of former Chief Andy Anderson and current Chief Robbie Cassou, and a dedicated and watchful board of commissioners, Quincy fire has evolved into a model for volunteer fire departments in rural areas.
It operates three stations, a training facility and a fleet of 12 vehicles: seven engines, a water tender, rescue squad, support vehicle, ladder truck and hazmat truck. The vehicles are well-equipped, and even include dive gear because of the high number of car-in-the-river incidents. Some volunteers are dive certified for those difficult rescues since they are usually first on scene and time is critical.
Ballots arrive in mailboxes this week and must be returned by June 4. Please take the time to vote “Yes” on Measure A.