Tuesday will be a ‘red-letter day’ for BFD

Tuesday morning at 6:45, the Biloxi Fire Department reaches a huge milestone: The department, already one of the top-rated in the state, will have the ability to meet the national standards of having 15 firefighters on the scene of any active fire call.

The department is able to achieve the new standard thanks to a $1.2 million grant secured by Sen. Thad Cochran. The grant pays the salaries of 12 firefighters for two years, enabling the department to staff an extra fire truck at its busiest station, the Bay Vista Fire Station on Pass Road in west Biloxi.

Ten of the 12 firefighters have been in training since December in order to be ready for Tuesday, their first day of full service. Two other firefighters are yet to be hired to complete the 12-member addition to the department.

“This is huge for the Biloxi Fire Department and the citizens of Biloxi,” said Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich. “What this means is that we’re responding to active fires with more manpower. That helps us protect our firefighters who are fighting fires on the scene, and for the citizens and businesses of Biloxi, it means enhanced protection of life and property.”

The National Fire Protection Association mandate calls for fire departments to have at least 15 firefighters respond to a first-alarm fire at a 2,000-square foot residential structure.

Biloxi Fire Chief Joe Boney said the dozen new firefighters also means the department will have more first responders on a downtown-based rescue vehicle that responds to emergencies citywide.

“For most people Tuesday will probably be a typical day,” Boney said, “but for us in the Biloxi Fire Department, and for our citizens, this is a red-letter day. We are already one of only three departments in the entire state to have a Class 3 rating, and now we’re even better.”
See the weekly recap from Fire, Police and Community Development departments


News and notes

Council meeting: The Biloxi City Council meets Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. at Biloxi City Hall. To see the agenda for the meeting, along with supporting documents, click here.

Road work: For the latest on road work throughout the city, including more than two dozen notices, click here.

Grillin’ photos: To see three-dozen images from this weekend’s Grillin’ on the Green, as published on the city’s Facebook page, click here.