The Suppression Division of the Grand Rapids Fire Department is comprised of 11 fire stations with 20 front-line emergency vehicles staffed with trained personnel to limit life and property loss when emergencies occur. Full-time professional firefighters work a rotating 24-hour shift to provide emergency response to calls for fires and special operations such as medical emergencies, industrial rescue, water rescue, confined space rescue, high-angle rope rescue, trench rescue, building collapse, hazardous materials, weapons of mass destruction response, and vehicle extrications within the City of Grand Rapids.
In addition to responding to emergencies, the on-duty fire crews spend time training to maintain and increase their skill levels. They also conduct fire prevention inspections of local businesses, oversee fire drills in our city schools, annually check the operation of each fire hydrant in the City of Grand Rapids, and interact with the community whenever possible.
One of the missions that the Grand Rapids Fire Department enjoys providing to our visitors and citizens is that of Emergency Medical Service. Our department is licensed with the State of Michigan as a Medical First Responder Agency with 22 licensed apparatus, all of which carry Automated External Defibrillators (AED), and 212 medically licensed providers.
Prevention and Investigation
The Fire Prevention Bureau (FPB) is a principal component of the Grand Rapids Fire Department's efforts to protect against loss of life and property in our city. The FPB focuses its efforts by proactively enforcing the City's Fire Code to ensure that existing commercial buildings remain fire-safe, by educating both the business community as well as the community at large in fire safety procedures and practices, and by providing technical expertise to the City's Development Center and Building Inspections Division on life-safety systems installed in new and remodeled buildings.
Our responsibilities also include responding to fires to identify the origin and cause of accidental and intentionally set fires in order to prevent future fires. To determine fire origin and cause an examination and excavation of the fire scene is conducted. The fire scene is documented, evidence is collected, and interviews of owners, occupants, bystanders, witnesses, victims, and informants are conducted. We design fire safety education around the fire origin and cause that we obtain.
On Tuesday July 31, 2012 the Grand Rapids Fire Department unveiled its new live fire training facility. Located on city property at 2125 Butterworth SW, this multi-story building was designed and constructed entirely by fire department personnel; but not without an enormous amount of support from other city departments and the community that they serve.
Utilizing transformation funds, the GRFD will have for the first time in its history a facility dedicated to training under the most realistic conditions they face on a daily basis. The building was assembled and customized by our firefighters to meet the needs of the department. With the skilled labor provided by our personnel as well as equipment and kind donations from other City departments and the private sector, the entire project was constructed for approximately 20% of the cost of a new building.
The Strategic Planning Division provides assistance to the fire department in terms of planning for both short and long term decision making and associated operational changes. This will be accomplished through a broad variety of insights and viewpoints utilizing various means such as historical data, projected performance, risk benefit analysis and comparison to the best practices of the fire service.
Building and Fleet Maintenance
The Maintenance Division of the Grand Rapids Fire Department is responsible for the maintenance and repairs of 70 vehicles and 11 Fire Stations The Fire Department fleet consists of a wide range of vehicles, the front-line fleet consists primarily of pumpers, squads, rescue engines, quints, and command vehicles. The fleet also has vehicles that respond to a wide variety of more specialized emergency responses. These additional units range in size from tractor trailers for operations such as Hazardous Materials responses, to boats for river rescue operations.
The Fire Department has recently completed several projects to help decrease our energy use. These projects help not only with cost savings but also allow us to reduce our carbon footprint. The projects include geothermal heating at two of our stations and also lighting upgrades.
Our offices are located on the second floor of the LaGrave Avenue Fire station at 38 LaGrave SE by using the entrance on Weston Street SE. We will be happy to assist you when visiting our office. If you are in need of a fire report, fire prevention information, have a billing or any other type of question we will do our best to see that your needs are met. Thank You for visiting our website, we look forward to assisting you on your next visit.