On average Lansing Fire responds to an incident about every half hour, twenty-four hours a day, three hundred and sixty five days a year. That was over 14,500 runs in 2005.
The role of a Fire Department has changed over the years. The division that responds to alarms is typically called our Suppression Division. This title came when it was simply a Fire Department. As times have changed so has LFD. Firefighting is still a major focus.
We also receive training in multiple areas. The employees of LFD pride themselves on the broad response capabilities. This job requires teamwork. This team exist to save lives and protect property. Everyone takes pride in a job well done.
We also know that is not the way to grade yourself. You are never as good as your last run, you are as good as your next one! That keeps people looking for the latest way to address hazards and mitigate situations.
All Lansing Firefighters are cross trained in EMS. The Emergency Medical Services Division operates jointly with Suppression. Firefighters have to be a minimum of a Emergency Medical Technician to be a firefighter at LFD. Many are licensed as Paramedics. LFD operates four ambulances at the paramedic (advanced life support) level. This medical training is not just used while riding the ambulance. Crews rotate between Ambulance and Fire rig duty each shift.
How does this rotation assist performing the firefighter duties? It is hard to list all of the benefits. It can simply start with fires. If a firefighter performs a rescue they do not have to turn the person over for care, they initiate it.
In trench collapse, vehicle extrication or building collapse, firefighters can provide care when others would not be able to reach a patient.
Lansing Fire responds to hazardous materials (Haz-Mat) incidents as well. Several specialty areas get involved during a haz-mat event. Arriving fire rigs determine the level of hazard and call appropriate resources. The haz-mat and medical training assist in determining health threats involved. Hazardous materials teams operate at different levels of certification. LFD operates at the Operations Level. Many incidents are able to be handled at the Operations level (instead of having to call in outside resources that might have to travel from distant locations). They also participate in Michigan's RRTN program and may be called upon to travel to a Haz-Mat site.