The Most Frequently Asked Questions at the Wright City Fire District
I called 911 for a medical emergency and a fire truck came to my home. Why is this?
Time is critical in a medical emergency. Every Wright City Firefighter is cross trained in Emergency Medical Services.
Time is an important aspect of firefighting, because flames can rapidly spread through a building. The ability to quickly respond to a fire provides more time to rescue people inside and save property by suppressing the blaze in the early stages.
It makes sense to use a firefighter's ability to "get there fast" for other types of emergency response as well (such as heart attacks, strokes and trauma). WCFPD only responds to life-threatening medical emergencies such as those listed above.
Time is a critical factor for someone who has experienced a heart attack, injury, or other illness that makes them stop breathing. The heart and brain have a better chance of full recovery if they receive oxygen rapidly. Our firefighters can use life saving techniques to help prevent death or permanent injury. These life saving techniques are much more effective if they can get to a patient quickly.
Our mission is to provide the best emergency coverage with the least expenditure of resources for those who live and visit our community. Unfortunately, we have no way of knowing what we will encounter on a call until we arrive. We work in a “what if” and “all risk” business. Responding to the unknown is part of our job.
When a 911 call comes in, our dispatchers often do not get precise or complete information. As such, our dispatch is based on a worst-case scenario. To ensure the highest level of care, a fire engine equipped with first-aid and basic emergency medical response supplies is often dispatched along with an EMS unit.
The expertise they both bring is truly lifesaving.
Why do I have to dial 9-1-1? Can't I call the fire station directly and save time?
The 9-1-1 system is designed to save valuable seconds by routing the police, EMS or fire unit that is located closest to you. Fire stations are not equipped to take emergency calls; calling the station delays response time.
How many personnel do you have?
The Wright City Fire Protection District is a “combination” fire district, meaning we have both full-time career firefighters and volunteer members. The majority of the firefighters in this district are volunteer personnel. Each active volunteer member is paid a yearly stipend to respond to calls and participate in approved training. The pay is not a lot and there’s no way to make a living as a volunteer member, but ask any WCFPD volunteer member and they will likely tell you the rewards of being in the fire service are far beyond monetary measure.
The WCFPD employs fifteen full-time employees. The full-time employees consist of an Administrative Manager, eleven firefighters, an Assistant Chief, and a Fire Chief. We currently have four career firefighters assigned to House One twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
I have seen Wright City Units responding outside of Wright City. Why were they doing that?
The Wright City Fire Protection District provides mutual and automatic aid response to our neighboring fire districts when they need our assistance. These fire districts also respond to Wright City Fire District to assist us. Wright City Fire District does not go unprotected during these events as volunteers, career staff, or other communities come to our firehouse to stand by in case of another emergency.
I have seen a firetruck or other emergency vehicle with its lights and siren on pass me or go through an intersection, then turn its lights off. Why?
This is more than likely because the call was a multiple unit response and another arriving unit radioed back to the others that either their response wasn't necessary or did not warrant the dangers of running with lights and sirens. Vehicle operators will often pass through an intersection just after receiving the call to downgrade or cancel their response as we have found shutting all lights are sirens off while approaching the intersection often confuses drivers more than proceeding through and then shutting them off.
Why do you block traffic lanes at auto accidents, sometimes more lanes than necessary?
We block traffic lanes for the safety of our personnel and our patients. Blocking extra lanes keep our personnel safe when they go back to our apparatus to get more equipment and help protect the victim we are trying to stabilize. Many Firefighters, Police Officers, EMT’s and Paramedics, and Tow Operators are killed or injured each year while working at incidents on streets and highways. All WCFPD operational personnel have spent many hours training on a national Traffic Incident Management System to ensure our operations meet best practice standards.
Why do Firefighters use fire trucks to tend to non-emergency business?
To ensure the most effective service at the time of an emergency, our Firefighter crews must stay together during their entire shift. Our firefighters work 48-hour shifts and on occasion need to stop to pick up food and supplies for the station. They maintain constant radio contact with the dispatcher and respond to an emergency regardless of their location.
Who do I contact about a fire extinguisher that is broken or needs to be recharged?
If your extinguisher is broken, you may drop it off at our Headquarters facility at 396 West Second Street North and we will be happy to dispose of it for you. If you have an extinguisher capable of being recharged, you may search online or look up a number for a fire extinguisher authorized service contractor. The Wright City Fire Protection District cannot service fire extinguishers.
Where can I obtain assistance with the installation of a child safety seat?
Child safety seat check-up events are conducted regularly at Wright City Fire Headquarters, located at 396 West Second Street North in Wright City. To set an appointment, please call 636-745-2262.