Palm Beach County (FL) Fire-Rescue

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Palm Beach County Fire-Rescue (PBCFR) was created on October 1, 1984, when the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners passed a resolution consolidating the existing fire districts in Palm Beach County.

Prior to 1984 the following fire districts were in existence, covering mostly unincorporated Palm Beach County:

  • Jupiter-Tequesta
  • Juno Beach
  • Old Dixie
  • Military Park (Westward Fire District, which covered the community of Westgate and Belvedere Homes, consolidated into Military Park prior to 1984.
  • Southwest
  • Trail Park
  • Reservation (Tri-Community Fire District, which covered the Hypoluxo area, consolidated into Reservation prior to 1984.
  • Del Trail
  • Canal Point
  • Palm Beach International Airport

These departments consolidated, under the leadership of Chief Herman Brice, into Palm Beach County Fire-Rescue (PBCFR). Most of the incorporated cities, unless they were under a contract with a fire district, retained their own departments.

The following departments merged into Palm Beach County Fire-Rescue between 1990 and 2011:

  • Lantana Fire-Rescue, Incorporated 1921(October 1, 1997)
  • Royal Palm Beach Fire-Rescue (March 13, 1999)
  • Lake Park Fire Department (June 29, 2002).
  • Belle Glade Fire Department (PBCFR began providing fire protection coverage in October 2006. EMS coverage began on January 7, 2008)
  • Pahokee Fire Department (January 7, 2008)
  • South Bay Fire Department (January 7, 2008)
  • Lake Worth Fire-Rescue (October 1, 2009)
  • Palm Springs Public Safety, Fire-Rescue Division(October 1, 2009)

Unit Staffing/Assignments

The minimum staffing is as follows:

  • Engines and Quints (Advanced Life Support, also called ALS):
    • 1 Company Officer (Operational Captain)
    • 1 Driver Operator
    • 1 Firefighter (If the unit is an ALS Engine/Quint then 2 of the crew members must be paramedics.
  • Rescues:
    • 1 Lieutenant
    • 1 Firefighter/Paramedic
    • 1 Firefighter/EMT (Certain trucks do not have the EMT position filled as of yet. On some units this is a trainee spot for Firefighter/Paramedics doing probationary ride time and being evaluated by a Proctor/Training Officer).
  • Special Operations (Haz-Mat/Dive/High Angle Rescue):
    • 1 Haz-Mat Driver/Operator
    • 1 Firefighter/Haz-Mat Technician (All firefighters assigned at the two Special Operations stations are certified as Hazardous Materials Technicians).
  • Tenders (formerly called Tankers):
    • 1 Driver/Operator
  • ARFF Airport Crash Trucks (called Dragons):
    • 1 ARFF FF/Driver
  • Brush trucks:
    • Not normally staffed except during Fire Warning periods or after hurricanes. The crew from the engine takes the truck if it is needed and they both operate together as a Task Force.