2016 Record Year for Dwight Fire Protection District

2016 proved to be a record year for the Dwight Fire Protection District. The Dwight Fire Department responded to 284 emergency incidents in 2016, a 30% increase from 2015. Over the last 5 years, the department’s responses have increased by 104%. In 2016, 24% of responses were calls to assist Dwight EMS, 22% of calls were for vehicle accidents, 11% of calls were for in-district structure fires, and 13% of calls were for Mutual Aid structure fires. The average response time (time of 911 call until time that FD arrived at the address) in 2016 was 10 minutes and 24 seconds and the average turnout time (time of 911 call until time a fire truck leaves the station) was 8 minutes and 52 seconds. The average number of firefighters per call was 6.5 firefighters.
In addition to handling emergency incidents and training activities, the department was very active participating in events throughout the community. Over the last 12 months, members of the fire department volunteered to assist during events that included the Taste of Dwight, Dwight Spring Fest, Dwight Harvest Days, DEA Christmas Parade, DEA Auction, Father’s Day Touch A Truck Event, Fire Prevention week activities at DGS, Dwight Fourth of July Fireworks, Dwight Grade School Camp 911, School Fire Drills at DGS and DTHS, and the Buzz the Gut Extrication Demonstration. In addition, the department provided fire truck escorts for DGS and DTHS sports teams, and conducted facility tours and pre-planning events at local businesses. Dwight Fire Department hosted two blood drives during 2016 through the American Red Cross with a total of 114 successful donations collected. Members logged over 2,500 man-hours in public education and fire prevention activities this year.
The fire department expanded the boundaries to allow people who do not live in Dwight to join the department. The individuals who joined the organization from out of the district are asked to volunteer 8 hours per week to help cover emergency incidents, training and station tasks. This completely volunteer station coverage has led to over 12,000 man hours (excluding training and emergency incidents) in successful emergency protection. The fire department is averaging five people volunteering to staff the station every day which would cost an estimated $250,000 if they were paid positions. Over the last two years, the fire department increased its active member roster to 50 firefighters, which is 30 firefighters higher than the 20 member roster in 2014. During the same time period, we have significantly increased the number of members who are trained to assist with emergency medical incidents. We currently have 26 trained EMS personnel which include 10 paramedics, one EMT Intermediate and 15 EMT Basics. The number of trained EMS personnel will increase again this year as there is a large number of individuals registered for EMT and Paramedic class for 2017.
DFPD began operating a formal partnership with the Romeoville Fire Academy which is the 2nd largest fire academy in the state of Illinois. We also formalized an Intergovernmental Agree-ment with the State of Illinois to use several buildings at the Dwight Correctional Center for Fire and Police Training. The fire department has hosted monthly hands-on drills at the closed prison and has hosted mutual-aid training with other fire departments at the site as well. Multiple other emergency agencies have contacted DFPD regarding utilization of this facility for training.
Dwight Firefighters have logged over 12,000 man hours of training during 2016. Dwight firefighters as well as firefighters from around the state of Illinois attended state certified classes through the Romeoville Fire Academy taught at the fire station and the prison. Some of the courses that were offered this year at Dwight were Rope Operations, Tactics and Strategies, Hazardous Materials Operations, Technical Rescue Awareness, and Fire Service Vehicle Operator. The partnership with Romeoville Fire Academy has saved the fire district over $7,000 in tuition during 2016. For any further information please visit the fire department’s website at www.dwightfire.org or email Deputy Fire Chief Justin Dyer at jdyer To apply visit the website, call the station to inquire (815-584-2373), or stop at the station located at 111 South Prairie Avenue.