Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Message from Fire Chief Gregory Bulanow

Fire Chief Gregory Bulanow
Thank you for your interest in the North Charleston Fire Department.  Our department includes a diverse group of over 225 men and women working collectively to accomplish our mission to protect the quality of life in the City of North Charleston from all predictable hazards through prevention and emergency response.  The mission extends far beyond responding to fires or other emergencies and includes contributing to the quality of life in our City.  For those who assume that our firefighters are lounging at their stations waiting for an emergency call, our mission statement may seem confusing.  What does it mean for a fire department to protect quality of life, and what would that look like?

To see for yourself, you do not need to schedule a visit or tour a station.  In fact, you may not even find us there.  Instead, simply look for us as you participate in the things that are important to you and your family.  Each weekend our crews participate in school festivals, church picnics, neighborhood block parties, corporate family days, charitable fundraisers, and a variety of other events, providing fire safety information and prevention displays.

We offer medical first responders at sports tournaments, competitive run/walks, and neighborhood service days.  You may see us on the water providing assistance to boaters in distress during events, such as the recent Blue Angel’s air show.  You may see us on bike patrol during large events at North Charleston’s beautiful Riverfront Park, or at a child’s birthday party at North Charleston’s fantastic Fire Museum.  Late at night, you may see members of our Fire Marshal’s Bureau at nightclubs and restaurants to ensure the safety of those enjoying the City’s night life.

During the week, our firefighters are active in our schools, teaching fire prevention, as well as serving as positive role models in reading and mentoring programs.  You may see us at your place of employment, providing inspections to ensure compliance with fire codes to ensure your workplace is safe, or “pre-planning” a building for accurate information in the event of an emergency.  Our certified technicians help parents of small children learn to properly install safety seats in their vehicles.

Throughout the year, our crews join with the other City departments for the Neighborhood Enhancement Team (NET), working to improve the quality of life in targeted neighborhoods.  Our crews go door-to-door installing free smoke alarms as part of our award winning program that has provided thousands of these life saving devices to North Charleston residents.

Any one of these sights is a glimpse of us meeting the demands of our mission.  Our crews are engaged directly with our residents and businesses, working to prevent emergencies or in position to give immediate assistance in ways that fit specifically with the needs of our City.  Our crews also keeping a rigorous training schedule and maintain a constant state of readiness to respond en force to any emergency incident.  These initiatives and activities help us remain proactive and vigilant in providing fire protection.

We work hard to ensure that you will not need us in our traditional role of emergency responders, but if you do, be assured that you will experience the same high quality response that the North Charleston Fire Department has provided since our beginnings in 1937.  While our mission has expanded to meet the demands of the 21st century, it remains consistent with the oldest and finest traditions of the fire service.

Hop over to the City's website for more information on the North Charleston Fire Department

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