Growing city needs more first responders

Georgetown growing fire, ems force

GEORGETOWN - As the population in Central Texas continues to grow, the force of first responders is working to grow with it.

Georgetown Fire Chief John Sullivan said they need more paramedics and a new fire station.

Matt Stubblefield worked as a paramedic, and has now worked at the Georgetown Fire Department for almost a year, doing both.

"I had never worked in the fire side and I wanted to expand my career from just paramedicine to kind of all hazard responder," said Matt Stubblefield.

Doug Srock has been at it for seven years and said the work is rewarding.

"I would say I love it because you never know what you're going to get, every day you get a chance to help different people," said Srock.

But with more and more people moving to Georgetown, the city needs more first responders like Stubblefield and Srock.

"It's not growing slowly, it's growing very quickly, and the need is already there," said Srock.

Fire Chief John Sullivan said their call volume continues to go up, so they want to be prepared.

He's working to fill nine new positions by the end of the year.

"This is more of us forecasting that as the area starts to become a little more dense there’s going to be increased call activity," said Sullivan.

Sullivan said they're also looking to build a sixth fire station at FM 3405 and Williams Drive.

"That's where a lot of the development is being driven," said Sullivan.

It's technically outside of city limits, but an area the city serves as a partnership with Emergency Services District 8.

"They're building it, we're operating it,” said Sullivan.

ESD 8 will spend the money to build the station, and the city will run and operate it.

Sullivan said the new station will cut down on response times, save nearby homeowners on their insurance, and plan for future growth.

"It’s without a doubt that we do need a station on the west side," said Sullivan.

They hope to start construction early next year and open the new station in 2018.

He also said they're already in talks to hire even more EMS workers next year, and want to start looking at another new fire station on the east side of town near Southwestern University.

(© 2016 KVUE)


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