Long Beach, Yaupon Beach, Oak Island, Southport – History Notes

Last updated 6:20 a.m. June 19. This posting is undergoing updates, as additional historical perspectives are added. News out of Brunswick County. Yaupon Beach Fire Department is merging with Southport Fire Department.  Starting July 1, 2018, the town of Caswell Beach will contract with the town of Southport for fire protection. The beach town had …

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The Perils of Historical Shorthand

Learned a good lesson the other day. I’ve long-used shorthand, for noting the concept of “one year or the next year.” For example, writing “the fire truck was a 1950 or 1951 Ford” as “the fire truck was a 1950-51 Ford.” No problem, right? But watch what happens here: 1950 – The fire department was organized. 1951 …

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Fraternity Fires in Chapel Hill – 1909 to 2001

This posting was originally posted on Facebook, on the Chapel Hill Fire Department Retirees & History page. Every part of a community is invariably impacted by fire. And as the clock is turned back, toward simpler times with fewer priorities on life safety and fire prevention, the numbers of destructive blazes invariably rise. Here’s a list …

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Kenansville Fire Department Starts Ambulance Service, 1955

“Believed to be the only ambulance as such owned by a volunteer fire department in North Carolina,” noted the Duplin Times on July 14, 1955. See article below Definitely one of the earliest. What other volunteer (only) departments were operating ambulances at that time? That’s the open question to readers, to accompany these neat pictures …

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Chapel Hill’s 1980 Mack… Was Almost a Seagrave

Mack CF pumpers were popular trucks in these parts. Chapel Hill had a 1980 model… that was almost a Seagrave. Here’s that story. After soliciting bids for a new pumping engine that year, the town awarded the contract to Seagrave for $112,832.35. The other bidders were Central Mack Sales in Raleigh, Howe Fire Apparatus, Jack Cocke …

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Chapel Hill Buys Ex-Airport Pumper, 1963

Wait, what? See these town minutes* from February 16, 1963. As it turns out, Chapel Hill’s 1962** American LaFrance pumper was a gently used model, that had been serving at the “Greenville airbase” for about three months, while the airport awaited delivery of a crash truck. Bought for $20,500, versus what would cost $26,000 new. As was customary …

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Four Shelby Firefighters Killed in Gas Explosion, May 25, 1979

This retrospective first appeared on FireNews.net in 2006, as the North Carolina Fallen Firefighter’s Foundation dedicated their new memorial in Raleigh. It also appears on my fallen firefighter’s history page. This posting also replaces a 2009 blog posting that linked to other retrospectives, which are now unavailable.  Apparently Routine Fire One of the darkest days in North Carolina’s …

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Zebulon Fire Department Facility and Fleet Study

In February 2018, the town of Zebulon received the results of a fire facilities and fleet study (pdf) conducted by Brooks Innovative Solutions, from Greensboro.  It examined the fire department’s current infrastructure, historic and projected call volume and service now, and property and population development past ‘n’ present. And both in the municipal and rural fire …

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Report on Recommended Budgets

The local city and county governments have been releasing their proposed budgets for FY19. Here are some highlights, from around the area… Raleigh – Web Site No added positions New aerial ladder New pumper Funding for long-term staffing study Funding for driver-operator course planning ($200,000) Station 1 project funding, continued ($15.6M) Absent is Station 3 or …

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