Update: Chief Reinhardt on Cullman’s new fire station

W.C. Mann

Concept image of Cullman Fire Station No. 3

CULLMAN – The Tribune recently got an update on Cullman Fire Rescue’s (CFR’s) new Fire Station No. 3 from Chief Edward Reinhardt, Jr.  The four-bay facility is located on Alabama Highway 157, behind Merchants Bank on the east side of Piggly Wiggly; it will serve the northwest part of the city.

“We’ve actually already started construction there,” said Reinhardt.  “They’ve poured some of the pads, and they’re starting to put up some of the framing today (Thursday, Apr. 6).”

According to Reinhardt, the station will house CFR’s administrative offices, which are currently in Cullman City Hall, and will be the base of operations for first response/pumper engine 517 and the department’s new rescue truck no. 3.  The rescue truck is a medical response vehicle; the engine is a multi-purpose platform equipped for medical response, firefighting, automobile crash response and numerous other tasks.  CFR Training Officer Brian Bradberry added that the new station will also house the department’s hazmat and technical rescue trailers.

When the station is completed, it will go into operation immediately.  The extra personnel needed are already employed and undergoing necessary training by the CFD.

Reinhardt explained, “Staffing was a problem, but we went for a SAFER grant, which is a grant for personnel.  We were awarded that grant for 12 additional personnel, so it pays their salary and benefits for two years.  After that, the City has to pick it up, but that gives them the time to get adjusted, get our people in here and get them trained.  We have them on staff now; in fact, we’re close to having them all trained, where we can start running just like we had a third station, but it will be run out of Station One for the time being.”

Station No. 3 is expected to be completed and open by late November.  The chief will be happy to see it happen.

He reflected, “We feel very fortunate to be getting this.  It’s been a long time needed, and the mayor and council saw the need for it.  We really appreciate it.”

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