The Curious Case of Washies and the Missing Fire Trucks
by Brian Coll
This was the scene yesterday at the Washington Fire Company #1 or better known as Washies Firehouse.
The Washington Fire Company #1 has been serving our borough for about 150 years. Currently between active firefighters, auxiliary members in addition to the Ladies Auxiliary you have around 50 people that all feel like they lost their home today. These are good people who care about our community. When the phone rings in the middle of the night or at dinner time these are the people protecting us. Not everyone is an active firefighter, these other members help around the community.
We have spoke to a number of the members of Washies and they were blindsided by the move from the Borough of Conshohocken. Just two days before members of the fire company were helping protect our borough at the annual fireworks display at Sutcliffe Park and two days later they woke up to the firetrucks in their bays being moved to Conshohocken Fire Company #2.
Here is the official post from the Borough of Conshohocken on their Facebook page:
The Borough of Conshohocken did not close Washington Fire Company on Friday, July 5, 2019. The Borough did remove Borough-owned equipment from Washington Fire Company, while the Borough attempts to work through administrative and operational items with the fire company’s management team. That equipment is being housed at, and will be dispatched from, Conshohocken Fire Company No. 2 until further notice. The County has been informed of this operational change. The health and safety of the Borough’s residents, businesses and visitors is paramount. Therefore, the Borough of Conshohocken has taken deliberate steps to ensure it continues to deliver the same level and quality of fire service protection to our residents, businesses and visitors during this time. Please contact Borough Hall at 610-828-1092 with any questions or concerns.
Now, people are wondering about the timing of this move and what made it come to this. Since the borough offices closed early yesterday, no one was answering the phone number that the borough provided. In talking to the reporter from 6 ABC news he confirmed that he reached out to every council member twice, TWICE by e-mail and no one responded to him. In his segment on the news last night he said the Mayor spoke to him via e-mail but could not comment on camera.
You can see the segment here: https://6abc.com/borough-removes-trucks-from-fire-company-in-conshohocken/5380724/
Here are my questions:
Were the volunteer firefighters from Washies told to report to #2?
What happens when there is a tragedy? ( I know we have a great fire company at Conshohocken Fire Company #2, but do we have enough firefighters )
Why the timing? A holiday weekend where one of the main activities are people setting off fireworks? Wouldn’t you want to have as many capable firefighters and fire companies able to respond?
267, 267 calls is the number I was told yesterday. Meaning Washies has responded to 267 calls in our community this year. It’s only the start of July.
Now, since today is Saturday, we have to wait a couple more days to get more of this story. We understand that Washies will be meeting with their company lawyer on Monday. Maybe on Monday the borough will have more answers for all of us. There has to be something else happening here.
While we are waiting for answers, let’s hope tragedy doesn’t strike.