A new fire station is now open and ready to respond to emergencies in East Lake and elsewhere in Chattanooga when needed. At a grand opening ceremony this afternoon, Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke and Fire Chief Lamar Flint symbolically dedicated the fire station by having a fire truck drive through fire scene tape that is normally used on real fire scenes.
Construction of the new Station 9, at 3250 8th Avenue, began in the fall of last year. Chief Flint said the firefighters at the old Station 9 moved in a week ago today and they really like their new home away from home. “The contrast is striking for these firefighters,” said Chief Flint. “This is a modern, energy efficient fire station where everything is new and they have much more room.” Chief Flint said the old Station 9, built in 1929, was too small to accommodate the larger, modern fire apparatus and was too old and costly to maintain. The new fire hall is anticipated to achieve LEED Certified status early next year. The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) establishes standards for environmentally sustainable construction.
All 15 firefighters assigned to the old fire hall will now be working out of the new Station 9. They will also be using a new, state-of-the-art fire apparatus commonly referred to as a pumper, which has a 1,500 gallon-per-minute pump and carries 500 gallons of water and 1,500 feet of supply line and many other fire and rescue tools. This apparatus will also be equipped with the new mobile data technology, which is part of the mayor’s Safer Streets Initiative. The mobile data technology will be installed on all of the fire department’s front-line fire apparatus.
In a nod to the fire department’s rich tradition dating back to 1871, the brass fire pole was moved from the old fire hall to the new one, where it will remain on display. Like most fire departments across the nation, the Chattanooga Fire Department stopped using fire poles because they resulted in too many unnecessary ankle sprains and other injuries.
Click here to see video by Bruce Garner.