The New Madison Fire Station 2

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Some Madison firefighters have spent too long living out of a mobile home on Hughes Road.  They're about to move into their new energy-efficient fire station.

Firefighters can handle a lot, but living in the cramped quarters of the makeshift fire station became downright dangerous.

"We had a couple of injuries where people were trying to get out of the mobile home and down the stairs," said Madison Fire Chief Ralph Cobb.

Now they're ready to move in to their new home - the energy-efficient Fire Station 2.  The building uses about 33 percent less energy than other stations.

It's decked out with Energy Star appliances, motion sensor lighting, recycled countertops and something else.

"The toilets are low-gallon flush, the shower heads are low-gallon flow," Cobb said.

To top it all off: solar panels.  These generate about 11 percent of the station's energy needs.

"And if the power requirements of the station are less than the solar powers are generating, it sells it back to Huntsville Utilities," Cobb said.

The new station cost about $2.7 million, with $1.4 million coming from federal grants based on their green efforts.

It's not only the appliances in the building that cut back on energy use, but how they got there.

"Everything was made in America. It decreases transportation costs of getting them to the job site," Cobb said.

Most of those materials came from within 500 miles.   As for the firefighter's big move...

"I think it's going to improve morale and also safety," Cobb said.

The department was cleared to move in on Wednesday.  Firefighters plan to move in within the next two weeks.

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