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Fairview Township
Located in Minnesota's Recreational Paradise

2013 Pillager Area Fire Protection Assn Annual Review

By Fire Chief Randy Lee
The townships of Sylvan, Fairview, Homebrook, Rosing, the east half of May, and the City of Pillager are the governmental units that own the fire department. This is a joint powers agreement. The Association  has one representative from each township and the city. This group meets monthly to take care of the month's business and bills. The Association has two stations. Station # is in  Pillager. Station #2 is on the west side of Gull Lake in Fairview Township.

The Association took in $49,869.73 in grants, donations, and other unbudgeted money this year. This really helps to keep the budget lower.

Pillager Area Fire and Rescue (PAFR) is the firefighting or "hands on" part of the Association. At this time there are 27 firefighters on the team. The firefighters are required to make at least 40 hours of in-house training and 25% of the runs per year. Also they are required to do the annual physical ability evaluation yearly. All firefighters are required to be Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) and Firefighter I with Haz Mat Ops certified within 2 years of joining. Most all have also gone on to be Firefighter II certified. The four new members just went through EMR training and took the state test last month. They are waiting for word at this time on  how they did. These classes were taken online and with three days of hands-on training and testing. By doing this class online the members did not have to be away from family or drive as much as before.

PAFR responded to 231 runs in 2013 which was 15 more than the previous record of 216 in 2011. PAFR firefighters had a total od 1,26 man hours of training. Figuring one hour per run, there was a total of 2,668 man hours on runs. This averages to just about 54 hours per member for training and 116 runs per member with 11 members per run.

If you would take the above figures and times those by $10.00 per hour you would see the Association's budget would have to be 35 to 40 thousand dollars higher. Most area departments are now paid-on-call meaning they are paid something per call and per training. PAFR is 00% volunteer meaning members are not paid anything for runs or training. This is not the norm anymore, but this also saves the Association and tax-payers thousands of dollars per year.

I do not think of the team from Pillager Area Fire and Rescue as just volunteers. I think of them as Professional Firefighters that volunteer. Doing it for PRIDE not PAY. 

The Fire and Rescue department is promoting the use of the Knox Box system. This calls for a special locked key box to be placed near the front door of a house. In the event of an alarm the emergency responders can use a special key, which is locked in the truck, to gain access so they don't have to force entry.  The Knox Box is especially recommended for seasonal owners and several businesses in Pillager will soon have the Knox Box installed.




Home of the 10,000 Acre Pillsbury State Forest