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Reader ponders life without fire protection

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To the Editor,

Have you ever thought what it would be like if you didn’t have fire protection? Well now is the time to begin thinking about it.

The volunteers of the Washington County Fire Department put in countless hours working the scene of house or grass fires, etc. They respond to these types of calls during all hours of the day or night. What if your house was on fire and you live in Washington County, but outside of Springfield city limits? If the Washington County Fire Department ceases to exist, who do you think will respond? Maybe nobody!
Minutes, even seconds, could be vital to the safety of your loved one(s) as well as personal property. Since the members of all the fire departments are volunteers, most of them work full time jobs elsewhere and that leaves a limited number of members which can respond to emergency calls. I think it’s time that we tell our county officials what we think about the fire protection that is provided by the Washington County Fire Department. I for one am very grateful and thankful for the fire protection we currently have.
Another thing to be concerned about is your homeowners insurance. Without fire protection, you can expect that your homeowners insurance will increase.
Now let’s think about all the main factories and local businesses in the Washington County area. Will this county be able to maintain those factories or businesses if there is no fire protection? What will happen to the county if there is no fire protection? Will there be fines from the State Fire Marshall’s office? Many of these items are things that you probably never thought about, but you better begin to think about them. Unless something is done quickly we, the county, will be without fire protection as of Jan. 1. I don’t consider that a good way to start off a new year.
I guess I could be a little prejudiced since my husband has served on both the Springfield and Washington County Fire Department for many years. They really don’t get the thanks they deserve, like many volunteers. It’s one of those things you take for granted, until you need the service. I hope that I never have a need for their service, but I hope if I do, that they are still around to help out.

 Disappointed Washington County resident,
 Anita Foster