2011-06-03 / Letters

City Budget Cuts

The following letter was written by firefighters who asked to remain anonymous because they have no permission to speak with the press.

Dear Editor:

Due to recent city budget cuts; the city plans to disband Engine 328, also known as “The Big House,” of 1619 Central Avenue. The firehouse is manned by Engine 328, Engine 264, and Ladder 134. The response area for the firehouse is the Nassau border to Beach 72 Street, even though the response area is often beyond Beach 72 Street. The average fire requires a minimum response of four engines and three ladder companies. The Rockaway Peninsula, stretching 15 miles, only has six engines and three truck companies. Far Rockaway building structures include: private houses, schools, synagogues, churches, hospitals, nursing homes, mid and high-rise residential apartment buildings. These buildings are prone to dangerous wind driven fires, which to control would require additional engine and ladder companies. Engine 328 also responds to auto accidents, electrical emergencies, gas leaks, and medical emergencies. If a patient requires CPR a frequently transmitted code 1099 is given which requires the engine to operate for at least 30 minutes. If Engine 328 is disbanded, who will respond to a fire if a code 1099 is given? The closest firehouse to 1619 Central Avenue is over a mile and a half away. The next one is over three miles away. If Engine 328 is disbanded, this could be devastating to the life and property of Far Rockaway.


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