Fire departments see call increase

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URBANA, Ill. (WCIA) — Carroll Fire Department in northeast Urbana is getting more calls than ever. But they’re not the only ones with calls on the rise. Departments across the area are seeing the same trend. The increase is linked to a few different reasons. None of which are fires.

For starters, fire departments are doing more now than before. Some firefighters are even get certifications for things like large animal rescues, so they have more reasons to be called out.

Another contributer is less volunteers. That’s also happening across the country. That decrease is forcing fire departments to make special arrangements for other departments to help. They do this by informing METCAD to always dispatch a certain department along with them if they’re responding to a certain kind of call.

“You can always say to the others, ‘Oh we have enough help. Okay great, you can slow down or go back; we’re good,’ That’s great. But in the meantime, we get a lot more calls because we’re putting each other on each other’s run tickets as automatic aid to provide the quickest response possible,” said Cameron.

Cameron said they continue to deal with what they call “nuisance calls.” For example, someone pulling the alarm as a prank. But it’s a lot more serious than just wasted time and money. Emergency vehicles actually increase the risk of an accident happening nearby because of the distraction.

Carroll fire is looking for people who have a passion for serving others. If you’re interested in volunteering with them, they would be glad to talk to you about it.

Here is breakdown of calls to departments in the area, in 2018 from January 1 to November 22 versus this year during the same date range.

Urbana
2019: 4,652
2018: 4,524

Carroll
2019:435
2018: almost 400

Champaign
2019: 7,678
2018: 7,477

Danville:
2019: 2,716
2018: 2,450

Decatur:
2019: 9,813
2018: 10,405

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