MADISON COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) -- It's long overdue. Madison County's volunteer fire departments are going under the microscope for the next few months. It's an evaluation that could lead to more efficient fire protection for county residents.
"We've got a plan, its over 40 years old," said Madison County Fire Marshal Bobby Rollins. "We're updating the plan, terminology has changed, firetrucks and operations have changed, we're just bringing it up to present times."
Rollins is ready for an update. The study will see if the departments need newer equipment or different training methods. The last time the departments were evaluated was 1977. That's when the Fire Marshal's office was created.
Rollins said the results to be just as grand to come out of this evaluation. "Probably manpower studies, maybe we need to be looking at more training or hiring full time firefighters to put at the stations to cover the area," he said.
So how does this affect you? Improving the fire services in your neighborhood will likely lead to better insurance rates for homeowners. "It will help on ISO ratings for everyone in the long range," said Rollins.
The evaluations are already in the works. "It's like I've always said in the fire service, if we're standing still, we're going backwards so we need to keep moving forward."
The Top of Alabama Regional Council of Governments is conducting the evaluations. A representative will meet with volunteer fire department chiefs from all over Madison County.
The study is expected to be finished in September.