Raleigh Rescue Boats, Past and Present

With the remnants of Hurricane Ian reaching Raleigh today, here’s a look at the city’s water rescue vehicles, past and present. Left to right, top to bottom: 1953 wooden rescue boats, originally operated by the Raleigh Emergency Rescue Squad at Station 1. And they’ve survived to this date, presently in storage. Lee Wilson photo, from …

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Raleigh Fire Calls During Hurricane Hazel in 1954

In October 1954, a much smaller version of the Raleigh Fire Department answered dozens of calls as Hurricane Hazel passed across the state. The department–with seven engine companies and two truck companies–had one of their busiest weekends ever, said newspapers. For four decades, Hazel was recognized as the benchmark of tropical weather in this part …

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Raleigh Rescue Squad Member Drowns, 1959

This is a blog version of a Facebook posting from February 2021. On Thursday, April 23, 1959, Raleigh Emergency Rescue Squad volunteer member and Wake County Sheriff’s Deputy Robert L. Battle, 45, drowned in the Cape Fear River in Chatham County. He was serving as a squad member and assisting with a search for a …

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Volunteer Program Ends at Apex Fire Department

This spring, an era ended in Apex. On May 15, 2022, a twenty-year agreement expired between the Town of Apex and the Apex Volunteer Fire Department Rural Services, Inc. (today named Apex Volunteer Firefighters Organization Inc.) and the municipal Apex Fire Department ended its volunteer program. New Beginning The agreement was established after town officials …

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Visual History of Wilmington Fire Department

New history chart. Wilmington Fire Department from 1905 to present. Version 1.0.  Need reader inputs, to double-check dates for station openings. Also seeking the dates/years that second and third aerial company were added, along with the heavy rescue company, and battalion chiefs.  View the chart: JPG | PDF See more history charts at legeros.com/history/charts See …

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Wilmington Add Three Squad Companies

On Monday, July 4, 2022, the Wilmington (NC) Fire Department activated three new squad companies, at Headquarters on Market street, Station 3 on Cinema Drive, and Station 8 on Eastwood Road. Each operates a 2022 Ford F-350/Knapheide utility truck, and is staffed with an officer and a Master Firefighter. The squad concept is part of …

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Facts and Figures about North Carolina Fallen Firefighters

This is a blog version of an earlier Facebook posting. Random data play. Facts and figures about the 333 names on the North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Memorial, from research by Legeros. Contents – Career vs. Volunteer vs. Part-Time – Causes – Counties with Highest Counts – Departments with Highest Counts – Counts of Additions by …

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Early Hand Engine Deliveries in North Carolina

This is a blog version of an earlier Facebook posting. Research alert. New findings about 1840s and 1850s hand engines in Edenton, Greenville, Greensboro (posted earlier), and Raleigh. The clippings (3 of 4) are from “Baltimore Builders of Fire Apparatus, 1823-1964” by the Fire Museum of Maryland, second edition, researched and written by Stephen Heaver, …

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How Many Battalion Chiefs Have Served Raleigh

This is a blog version of an earlier Facebook posting. Random Raleigh history. How many battalion chiefs have served the department, since the position was created (as District Chief) in 1971? By my count, the total is 92. < And expands to 93 this month, with the promotion of D. M. Ali.  1 – H. …

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Durations Between Raleigh Fire Station Closures

This is a blog version of an earlier Facebook posting. Random Raleigh history. What are the shortest and longest durations of station closures, between the time that an active engine house was closed and its permanent replacement (either same site or new site) was opened? Believe there are just six such instances, Stations 1, 2, …

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