The Modern Era
More Recent TimesIn the fall of 2000, a new Fire Station No. Four, (Terry Park) was opened at 475 6th Street West. It was built large enough to accommodate a cross-trained Firefighting/HazMat Team. Anticipating a move further into the Emergency Medical Services field, The Billings Fire Department also applied for and received from the State of Montana, a Paramedic Training License.
In 2001, Tiered Response Systems was initiated. Based upon the Emergency Medical Dispatch Program, it provides the ability to downgrade a response based upon liability and the nature of the call. Prior to this, all fire department responses on EMS calls were Code Three: Red lights and siren.
The Communications Center now employs 27 full-time employees and three 9-1-1-shift supervisors, one Communications Specialist, as well as one Communications Systems Manager. In the year 2000, they handled 63,304 incoming 9-1-1 calls, 196,752 incoming administrative calls, and 87,406 outgoing administrative calls. 92.43% of all incoming calls were answered in less that five seconds. They’ve come a long way from firing three shots into the air!
In 2004 the fire department received a new water tender, brush rig, and hazmat van. Also in 2004, the Fire Department received a grant for mobile data terminals.
In 2005, Fire Station Six and Three were equipped with solar electrical systems. These systems generate power for the stations and can also act as a backup power supply. Also in 2005, the fire department received a new pumper mini tower with a 75 foot platform ladder.
Personnel include a Fire Chief, an Assistant Fire Chief, A Sr. Administrative Coordinator, an Administrative Support II, a Fire Marshal, an Assistant Fire Marshal, three Deputy Fire Marshals, a Training Officer, four Battalion Chiefs, 30 Captains, 30 Engineers, and 41 Firefighters.
The Public Protection Classification (PPC) for the city limits of Billings is 4/4X. Any properties within the city limits, within 5 road miles of a recognized station, and within 1,000 feet of a credible water source will receive Protection Class 4. Any properties within the city limits, within 5 road mile of recognized station, but outside 1,000 feet of a credible water source = 4X.
Billings Urban Fire Service Area (BUFSA) is the rural portion of the community outside the city limits of Billings. This is where the tanker/tender operations are conducted. Any property within 5 road miles of a recognized station will receive Protection Class 7, Any properties over 5 road miles from a responding station will receive Protection Class 10.
Protection Classifications are not set by the Billings Fire Department nor does the BFD have access to these ratings. Information and ratings are provided and set by ISO (Insurance Services Office Inc.) 856-985-5600