New Lakeside fire station opens doors
“All risk” responder. Welcome to the phrase that Lakeside Fire Station No. 2 Captain John Hisaw used to describe the station that opened in early 2012 on Valle Vista Road in Lakeside, and is now ready to serve Lakeside residents, along with the other three stations in the Lakeside area.
What the “all risk” status means is responding to, well, fires--- be they house or wildfires, medical emergencies which might include childbirth, heart attacks, and even the animal distress calls.
According to Hisaw--- Station No. 2 responds to all categories of “different levels of emergencies; we’ve done horse recuses and dogs in fencing” said Hisaw.
Some Lakeside residents might be called “classic callers” in that they call 911 only when fires break out. The number of calls for service the whole district received last year according to their website was 6,726 with unit responses tallying up to 11,163.
“We have one engine, one medic unit, and one water tender,” explained Hisaw. “We take our own water and it carries 2,000 gallons” further elaborating on what a water tender is. “A fire engine holds 500 gallons.”
Saving lives and property is the order of the day with the district covering 55 square miles and protecting the 65,000 Lakeside residents from the flames day in-day-out, year- in and year- out since 1963.
Station No. 2 houses the administration, fire trucks and equipment, firefighters, and paramedics. Of note is the sign near a door that relays that this is a “safe surrender site” for a parent to surrender a baby confidentially without fear of arrest or prosecution for child abandonment. Hisaw said they have had a baby surrendered but at a different station.
The open house for Station No. 2 attracted 400 attendees. Hisaw pointed out that the community reaction to the new station “has been positive. They like the central location.”
What else do firefighters do? Plenty. Hurricane Sandy, back east, came into play when “Bella” a search and recuse dog at station No. 3 along with firefighter handler, Richard, were put on stand-by status to fly to the east coast if needed. So far they have not gone but the situation illustrates that firefighters help out in expanded geographic areas.