ROFD is Iowa Firefighters Association's Fire Department of the Year
The Red Oak Fire Department has been named the Iowa Firefighters Association’s Fire Department of the Year.
The award, which was presented to the ROFD on March 19, is one of the highest honors given by the Iowa Firefighters Association. Red Oak Fire Chief John Bruce said It is given to a department that is a great supporter of the Iowa Firefighters Association and the Fire Service, in at least one of a number of areas such as: fire prevention, legislation, convention, membership, etc.
“There are about 855 fire departments in the state, so it’s quite an honor to receive that, and it’s particularly special that we stuck out in the state’s eyes,” Bruce said.
The nomination addressed several attributes that the Red Oak Fire Department contributes:
• The ever growing response area for Fire/EMS coverage of service.
• The great level of competency and assistance exhibited on Mutual Aid Fire Responses
• The overall contribution to the Fire Service through continued support of training, logistical assistance to other departments, as well as, fire ground competency.
Bruce said the Red Oak Fire Department is partnered with the Iowa Fire Service Training Bureau as one of the seven testing locations in the state, which, allows firefighter students in the southwest Iowa portion of the state, a location to come to for certification testing, to help eliminate the need to travel to Des Moines for testing.
“It’s hard enough to get volunteers as it is, and this helps keep those potential volunteers from having to travel all over the state for testing. We partnered with them a number of years ago with great success,” Bruce stated. “This partnership also allows our location to be available for various training events as well.”
The Red Oak Fire Department has also been able to assist a few other departments with logistical information as they are developing their department operations to be very similar to how Red Oak is designed, including staffing, funding, and response guidelines.
Bruce felt one of the biggest reasons the department was given the honor was due to the excellent staff of first responders he works with daily.
“This award is a direct reflection of every member of the Red Oak Fire Department. The amount of time each member dedicates to the department is absolutely astonishing. This is a combination of training, shift work, emergency responses, and special events,” said Bruce. “Each firefighter possesses a mastery of expertise and when you bring all those folks together, you have a truly outstanding fire department. This is also demonstrated by all the other departments that we get to work with.”
Bruce said he spoke with some of the senior firefighters with the department that retired and moved on, and he confirmed that this is the first time the ROFD has received the award. Bruce also commended the community’s support in making the ROFD the success it is, and said they also played a part in Red Oak receiving the award.
“This is a reflection of the support the Fire Department receives from the Red Oak Community, City Administration and Council, the surrounding communities, as well as, the surrounding fire departments. The Red Oak Fire Department extends its appreciation to all of them for everything they have done for our department,” Bruce explained.