Zetus plans new fire station in West Lincoln

Published 9:58 am Wednesday, October 15, 2014

In an effort to extend the coverage of the Zetus Volunteer Fire Department, the department is calling for donations to help fund the construction of a new station near West Lincoln Attendance Center.

The fire district currently houses two stations, the first located on Watts Lane and the second located on Gum Grove Road. This third station, to be built near the intersection of Jackson Liberty and West Lincoln Drive will be more centrally located in the district to push coverage to the county line.

“We’re still in the process of purchasing the land and are looking for grants to help fund the construction,” says Dale Anding, chief of the Zetus VFD.

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Along with serving as another fire station, the facility will also host multiple other benefits for the surrounding community, including a training facility for other fire stations in the area, a community center for civilian use and a voting precinct.

Fundraising organizers for the new station have set up a GoFundMe account, which can be accessed by visiting the Zetus Volunteer Fire Department’s Facebook page. There are also fundraising events in the works but nothing is currently set in stone. Concerned citizens can also donate by responding to donation mailers the department routinely sends out to raise funds for its operations.

The department receives limited funds from the state. Therefore, a majority of the money used to fuel trucks and other operational needs is derived from donations from area residents. According to Jonathon Alford, one of the organizers of the fundraising initiative and a volunteer fire fighter for the Zetus VFD, construction is planned to move forward when enough money to fund the operation is raised.

“It may be a tin building, but it’ll be good. It’ll be something the community and people will be proud of,” Alford said when elaborating on the VFD’s want to make a nice facility that would fit the area.

In addition to great benefits to the community as a whole, the new station will bring the district’s class rating down to a rating of 8. This will result in a drop in insurance premiums for many residents within the VFD’s fire district.

“We’ve had people get 600,700, or 800 dollars back,” said Alford.

He goes on to describe the rating system. For an area with no fire department, a rating of unclassified is issued. If a department is then built in that area, the rating will drop down to a 10 and so forth with each number corresponding with the amount of the area within the coverage of a fire department.

Currently there are “roughly four miles of no water coverage,” said Alford. A home must be within five miles of a fire department to receive the best services available. “This new station will allow us to service households we weren’t able to because they were out of the range of our current two stations,” says Anding. Alford shares the chief’s belief that the addition of a third station will be both a necessary and beneficial addition to the county.