RURAL FIRE SERVICES
The Sheriff is appointed Rural Fire Warden by the County Commission and is responsible for the operation of the Lewis and Clark County Volunteer Fire Department as well as coordination of all rural fire departments within the county.
The Lewis and Clark County Volunteer Fire Department (VFD) is one of fifteen VFD's located within Lewis and Clark County. The Lewis and Clark VFD is charged with providing fire protection for all areas of the county which aren't covered by other fire jurisdictions or federal/state protection. The protection area for the Lewis and Clark VFD is approximately 800 square miles with 13,000 improved properties.
The Department currently has thirteen volunteer firefighters under the leadership of an appointed chief. During 1998, the department was paged and responded to 58 incidents. Fire personnel spent approximately 87 hours per firefighter in training and a total of 3,021 hours were donated by fire personnel. Following is a breakdown of incidents by type: Structure Fires 5; Mutual Aid 4; Chimney Fires 3; Hazmat Incidents 1; Vehicle Fires 4; False Alarms 10; Wood/Grass Fires 30; Public Service 1.
Currently the department has four fire apparatus. One 1972 Segraves 1250 GPM engine; one 1981 Chevrolet one ton 4X4 brush unit; one 1970 International 800 gallon water tender; and one 1994 Chevrolet 4X4 pickup used as an equipment and command vehicle. The department is currently rebuilding a 1980 Ford 1500 gallon water tender.
The Lewis and Clark VFD has an expansive jurisdiction working closely with many different agencies at the local, state and federal levels. The exposure to the various fire agencies greatly enhances the Lewis and Clark VFD's ability to pull resources together during a major incident or to go to the aid of another fire agency anywhere in the county, which has a total area of 3,461 square miles and a rural population of approximately 22,000.