Colorado Short Thousands of Volunteer Firefighters, Say State Fire Chiefs

Volunteer firefighters protect about half of Colorado’s residents, with solely volunteer departments being responsible for about 70 percent of the state’s land surface.

And they are significantly understaffed.

The Colorado State Fire Chiefs Association estimates that Colorado is short 3,500 volunteers in meeting National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards. That would require an increase of more than 40 percent to the present force.

“Generally, all fire departments that have volunteers need more volunteers,” said Garry Briese, executive director of the fire chiefs association.

Like their career counterparts, volunteers are expected to respond at all hours of day and night, often over extended distances, and in all weather conditions. They face the same obstacles, inherent health risks and physical dangers. The difference is that they don’t get paid.

Click map for a larger view

Click map for a larger view

There are 198 all-volunteer departments in Colorado serving more than 450,000 residents, and an additional 137 agencies that are a combination of career and volunteer firefighters. These “hybrid” stations serve 2.2 million residents, and 33 of them have only one or two paid firefighters.

To give perspective to the size and shape of all volunteer fire departments against their vast responsibilities, they average nine firefighters per 1,000 residents and six per 100 square miles, an area about two-thirds the size of Denver.

A Rocky Mountain PBS I-News analysis of state fire agency records highlights the critical role played by volunteers, as well as the impact of shortages on response times and numbers of responders. The data show:

• At least 43 departments are completely within the Colorado red zone – the territory most prone to destructive wildfires. Twelve of those departments are made up entirely of volunteers and 25 are hybrid departments. The red zone departments protect more than 300,000 Coloradans.

• On average, all-volunteer departments took 30 minutes to muster six firefighters to a wildfire, while hybrid departments averaged almost 45 minutes to reach similar incidents with fewer than five responders, according to a state survey.
• The average response time to all fire categories was 18 minutes with fewer than six responders, numbers below recommendations set by the NFPA. A volunteer department in a designated rural area should send at least six respondents to an incident within 14 minutes. The standards allows for four respondents in designated remote areas. The majority of areas protected by volunteers in Colorado are considered rural or remote.

“Volunteers go out sometimes with two or even just one person,” Briese said. “But the optimal number is four and we want no less than three – but to do that we would need a pool of about 30 volunteers (for each department).”

Of the 198 all-volunteer stations, 162 departments – or 82 percent – have fewer than 30 volunteers.

The Peyton Fire Protection District east of Colorado Springs, for example, protects a population of more than 10,000 Coloradans and 110 square miles, but has only 15 volunteers.

Mike Heckard, volunteer lieutenant in Peyton, said the obligations faced by volunteers, primarily work, and their short numbers, can mean that only one volunteer will respond.

“Sometimes we have volunteers who will be at the station and when we get a call they can respond straight from here,” Heckard said. “But a lot of our members work in Colorado Springs which is about half an hour away – so it really depends on the time of day we get the call.”

Heckard said nights and weekend emergencies see faster response times and more responders.

“Obviously time is a concern for us,” said Daniel Hatlestad, deputy chief of the Inter-Canyon Volunteer Fire Department in Jefferson County. “Fires change – it is extremely rapid in a house fire, where it can literally double in just a matter of minutes.”

But with few volunteers available, especially during the work week, longer response times can be inevitable.

Firefighters listen to Lt. Mike Heckard at  the beginning of their weekly training session at the all-volunteer station in Peyton, Colo., on Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014.

Joe Mahoney / Rocky Mountain PBS I-News

Firefighters listen to Lt. Mike Heckard at the beginning of their weekly training session at the all-volunteer station in Peyton, Colo., on Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014.

“One of the things about our department is that because we are all volunteers, we can always use more volunteers,” Heckard said. “That’s kind of a volunteer-wide problem right now.”

The Rock Creek Volunteer Fire Department covers about 350 residents in north Eagle County. Volunteer fire chief Brita Horn said her department’s operations are critical, but with only about 12 total volunteers it’s difficult to muster a big response.

“The people who actually live here in this area, who can actually make the call, there are probably six to eight who can actually respond,” Horn said. “We are lucky to get two people to respond.

“Most of us work during the day and we work in other communities and might be even an hour away,” said Horn, who is the Routt County treasurer, on top of her duties with Rock Creek. “We do have rolling tires within six minutes of receiving a call, but we respond from our homes or our work or our ranches.”

The Rock Creek district covers some 250 square miles.

“We can call up a strike team from other fire departments, but it can take about an hour for anyone to show up,” Horn said.

Firefighters train at the all-volunteer station in Peyton, Colo., on Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014.

Joe Mahoney / Rocky Mountain PBS I-News

Firefighters train at the all-volunteer station in Peyton, Colo., on Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014.

In 2012, the Inter-Canyon volunteers were among the first responders to the Lower North Fork Fire, one of the first in a series of highly destructive fires that year.

“It destroyed 28 structures (including 22 homes) and three people died,” Hatlestad said. “Ultimately, it took hundreds of firefighters, volunteers and career, to beat that one.

“This year we have had only two very, very small wildland fires,” he said. “It’s all dependent on the weather – but in other years we will have tremendous land fires.”

Volunteer firefighters are also first responders in case of medical emergencies, motor vehicle accidents and natural disasters. Only 15 percent of their calls are to actual fires.

“People see the fire department as that one source for emergencies,” Hatlestad said. “We have assisted in horse rescues, hazardous materials, rope rescues – like in searches near the canyons – and that’s a completely different set of talents and knowledge to complete those kinds of rescues.”

Last September’s flooding along West Creek devastated Glen Haven, an unincorporated community northeast of Estes Park, with volunteer firefighters acting as first responders, community organizers and cleanup crew.

Flood damaged home along the North Fork in October 2013.

Glen Haven Area Volunteer Fire Department / via Facebook

Flood damaged home along the North Fork in October 2013.

“We were lucky the new (fire station) building was about 90 percent complete by the flood – because our old one was washed away,” said Jason Gdovicak, volunteer chief of the Glen Haven department. “The new station became the sort-of town center and now we are kind of getting back to normalcy.”

The flood pushed many residents to volunteer, and to seek to join the fire department. But Gdovicak had to draw the line – the department simply could not afford it.

“It costs about $5,000 per volunteer,” he said. “That covers their training and safety equipment so the firefighter doesn’t have to put any money up.”

Training and protective gear are critical elements to maintaining an effective and safe volunteer force. But in Colorado, it’s all voluntary. There is no statute requiring firefighters to become certified, even though many departments push it.

“We do tons and tons of medical training, and we have to restart every year,” said Rock Creek chief Horn. “It’s all basic medical first responder – stop the bleeding, start the breathing.”

Volunteer departments often use training as a way of maintaining interest.

“The fewer fires you have, the fewer activities, the more volunteers will drift away,” Briese said. “We have to have a purpose and there are a lot of demands on our time right now.”

But training can also cost a significant amount of time and money. Then there is fundraising, which can be burdensome.

“Many of the all-volunteer departments raise their money with things like pancake breakfasts,” Briese said. They host fundraisers, apply for grants, or establish support through local tax levies.

“It’s all through fundraising and donations,” Gdovicak said. “We’re not a tax district and so in the middle of this summer we had a record year (raising $26,000) with the pancake breakfast.”

Horn said Rock Creek’s fleet consists of six donated fire trucks, and used protective gear has been donated, as well.

ock Creek fire chief Brita Horn posted this photo to Facebook marking their acquiring a firefighting vehicle: "New (to us) Fire Truck! From Kremmling Fire! you guys rock! Thanx! ...the truck was purchased with a grant from YVEA Consumer Cares. We love our electric company!"

Rock Creek Volunteer Fire Department / via Facebook

Rock Creek fire chief Brita Horn posted this photo to Facebook marking their acquiring a firefighting vehicle: ‘New (to us) Fire Truck! From Kremmling Fire! you guys rock! Thanx! …the truck was purchased with a grant from YVEA Consumer Cares. We love our electric company!’

“We are always asking for donations from the community and I write a ton of grants every year to try to pay for things,” she said. “We have to get equipment, radios and wildland gear, and these things are really expensive.”

Most volunteers face the struggle of balancing their careers, families and futures with the time commitment to train and the physical risks of volunteering.

“For me, the biggest challenge is the responsibility of getting everyone home, making sure everyone is safe,” Gdovicak said. “It’s a struggle at times and you just do the best you can do, the best for the community.”

As these volunteers consider the needs of their community, they say the benefit of taking on these challenges outweighs the risks.

“It’s what I love to do, I love helping people, I love the family that we have down here, I love everything about it to be honest,” Heckard said. “There’s no paycheck that they can write you for the feeling that you get when you are able to help someone.”

Lt. Mike Heckard discusses training protocol to Peyton Fire Department firefighters at the start of their weekly session at the all-volunteer station in Peyton, Colo., on Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014.

Joe Mahoney / Rocky Mountain PBS I-News

Lt. Mike Heckard discusses training protocol to Peyton Fire Department firefighters at the start of their weekly session at the all-volunteer station in Peyton, Colo., on Wednesday, Aug. 27, 2014.

Firefighters across Colorado

The table below shows the number volunteer-only firefighter jurisdictions in Colorado with population and size of the areas they serve.
Fire Agency Nametype of jurisdictionNumber of VolunteersNumber of CareerPopulation ServedSize of Jurisdiction in square milesNo of firefighters per 100 square milesNo of firefighters per 1,000 residents
#1 Fire Protection District (Cheyenne County)Fire Protection District3002,0009003.315.0
Adams County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District155965,00017435.31.1
Agate Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD2204003775.855.0
Akron Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2203,2007423.06.9
Alamosa County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District50015,5457806.43.2
Alamosa Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD3009,00030010.03.3
Allenspark Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3005,00015519.46.0
Amherst Volunteer Fire Department (Holyoke FPD)Fire Protection District2101,3003007.016.2
Anheuser-Busch, Inc.00#VALUE!#VALUE!
Antarctica Fire Department (McMurdo station)**MAIN PHONE RINGS TO ANTARCTICA**Industrial/Private0491,1005980.044.5
Archuleta County Emergency Operations DepartmentFire Authority539,8981,8470.40.8
Armel Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma County FPD)Fire Protection District1208012010.0150.0
Arrowhead Volunteer Fire Department (Arrowhead FPD)Fire Protection District24030020120.080.0
Artesia Volunteer Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District7050073.59.514.0
Arvada Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District28134120,00042385.71.4
Aspen Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3746,4558747.16.4
Ault-Pierce Fire Protection DistrictNon-Governmental VFD2303,8008028.86.1
Aurora Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)0346306,000153226.11.1
Baca Grande Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1221,00014100.014.0
Basalt & Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District461225,00049211.82.3
Bennett Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District6097,50032521.29.2
Berthoud Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District12315,50010622.61.5
Beulah Fire Prevention & Ambulance DistrictNon-Governmental VFD3502,00011131.517.5
Big Sandy Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2412,7005504.59.3
Big Thompson Canyon VFD (BTCVFD)Non-Governmental VFD1001,0105318.99.9
Black Forest Fire Rescue Protection DistrictFire Protection District30108,5005276.94.7
Black Hawk Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)0185002900.036.0
Blanca Volunteer Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)403852200.010.4
Boone Volunteer Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)1001,0006016.710.0
Boulder Fire RescueMunicipal (City or Town)0118103,00027437.01.1
Boulder Mountain Fire Protection Dist.Fire Protection District4743,50011463.614.6
Boulder Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District231418,00025148.02.1
Branson Fire DepartmentFire Protection District601501,6000.440.0
Briggsdale Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1207424502.716.2
Brighton Fire Rescue DistrictFire Protection District75643,11315042.01.5
Bristol Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1201,50010120.08.0
Broadmoor Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District045,000944.40.8
Brush Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)3205,00021015.26.4
Buckley AFB & Emergency ServicesDepartment of Defense04815,0005960.03.2
Buena Vista Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)1402,6009155.65.4
Burlington Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2803,5009213.08.0
Byers Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2103,0006403.37.0
Calhan Fire Protection DistrictNon-Governmental VFD1905,0002507.63.8
Campo Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2404004006.060.0
Canon City Area Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District213035,00012241.81.5
Capulin Fire Department (Northwest Conejos County FPD)Fire Protection District1106505022.016.9
Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District702012,00032028.17.5
Carmel Fire Department (Northwest Conejos County FPD)Fire Protection District1501,20012012.512.5
Cascade Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1601,2006266.713.3
Castle Rock Fire & Rescue Dept.Municipal (City or Town)37450,00075102.71.5
Cedaredge Fire Department (Delta County FPD #3)Fire Protection District2507,0003008.33.6
Center Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2702,3793009.011.3
Central City Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)1418503641.717.6
Central Conejos County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1701,2005340.014.2
Central Orchard Mesa Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1402,7008.14172.05.2
Chaffee County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District5239,5001,0155.45.8
Cheraw Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD2502520.1813888.999.2
Cheyenne Mountain (NORAD) Fire and Emergency Services AKA Cheyenne MTN AFB/NORADDepartment of Defense0385760.0#VALUE!
Cimarron Hills Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District61620,0006366.71.1
City of Golden Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)95918,50091155.65.6
City of Victor Fire Dept (Victor FPD)Other1501,20012012.512.5
Clear Creek Fire AuthorityFire Authority4526,10036512.97.7
Clifton Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District271432,00015.05272.41.3
Coal Creek Canyon Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District5007,00050100.07.1
Coal Creek Volunteer Fire Department (Florence FPD)Fire Protection District80300#VALUE!26.7
Cokedale Volunteer Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)11012011100.091.7
Colorado Refining Company Fire DepartmentIndustrial/Private404#DIV/0!#DIV/0!
Colorado River Fire RescueFire Protection District335033,0008519.82.5
Colorado River Fire Rescue**MERGED WITH BURNING MTN FIRE PROTECTION DISTRICT**Fire Authority305033,0008519.42.4
Colorado Springs Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)0420383,700186225.81.1
Cope Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD2102502169.784.0
Copper Mountain Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)5121,00013512.617.0
Cortez Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District8815,0001659.71.1
Costilla County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3504,0001,2002.98.8
Cotopaxi Fire Rescue (Deer Mountain FPD)Fire Protection District1102,5006183.34.4
Craig Fire/RescueFire Protection District24012,00018013.32.0
Crawford Fire Department (Delta County FPD #5)Fire Protection District20070016512.128.6
Crested Butte Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3502,50022015.914.0
Crestone Fire Department (Northern Saguache County FPD)Fire Protection District600250#VALUE!240.0
Cripple Creek Emergency ServicesMunicipal (City or Town)15201,1035464.831.7
Crook Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2012,5002807.58.4
Crowley Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1102001668.855.0
Crystal Lakes Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD17030010170.056.7
Crystal Park Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1805003.125576.036.0
Cunningham Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District07457,00015493.31.3
De Beque Fire Protection DistrictMunicipal (City or Town)381,500774.811.47.3
Deer Mountain FD #1 (Deer Mtn FPD)Fire Protection District2509,00013518.52.8
Deer Trail Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1805753505.131.3
Del Norte Fire Department (Del Norte FPD)Fire Protection District2901,7003747.817.1
Delta County Fire Protection District #1Fire Protection District29013,00023612.32.2
Delta County Fire Protection District #4 (Hotchkiss Fire Division)Fire Protection District2604,80011522.65.4
Denver Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)0909566,974330275.51.6
Divide Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District4203,20010042.013.1
Dolores Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3402,8001,5002.312.1
Donald Wescott Fire Protection Dist.Fire Protection District251530,00016250.01.3
Dove Creek Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD270180025910.415.0
Durango Fire Protection DistrictFire Authority734526,50032536.34.5
Durango La Plata County Airport Fire DepartmentOther075002350.014.0
Eads Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD24065021200.036.9
Eagle County Airport Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)015N/A5300.0#VALUE!
Eagle River Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District06340,00018633.91.6
East Grand County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3045,50020916.36.2
East Orchard Mesa Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1601,0004.36367.016.0
Eaton Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District50205,30064109.413.2
Eckley Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma Rural FPD)Fire Protection District27065024411.141.5
Edison Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1003003562.833.3
Egnar-Slick Rock Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1501503843.9100.0
Eisenhower Tunnel-CDOTOther026N/A0.06341269.8#VALUE!
El Paso County Wildland Crew (El Paso County Sheriff's Office)Other503200,0002,2002.40.3
Elbert Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2102,00018011.710.5
Elizabeth Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District301713,00011142.33.6
Elk Creek Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District60725,0009868.42.7
Ellicott Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3229,50027612.33.6
Englewood Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)05535,0006.9797.11.6
Estes Valley Fire Protection DistrictMunicipal (City or Town)32310,00011031.83.5
Evans Fire & RescueMunicipal (City or Town)301422,00022200.02.0
Evergreen Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District75226,00012064.23.0
Evraz North America Steel Mills Plant ProtectionIndustrial/Private0111,4003036.77.9
Fairmount Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District50159,80023.4277.86.6
Falcon Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District82326,50013323.31.2
Federal Heights Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)151611,7971.81722.22.6
Fisher's Peak Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District4003,0007354.813.3
Flagler Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2407504325.632.0
Fleming Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1601,0003005.316.0
Florence Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District27012,00024810.92.3
Florissant Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3416,5006653.05.4
Foothills Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District4036,50025.2170.66.6
Fort Carson Fire DepartmentDepartment of Defense05835,0006508.91.7
Fort Lewis-Mesa Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1823,5003316.05.7
Fort Lupton Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District501716,0008876.14.2
Fort Morgan Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District35010,00016421.33.5
Fountain Fire Department #1Municipal (City or Town)423327,50026288.52.7
Four Mile Fire DepartmentFire Protection District3502,20029120.715.9
Four Mile Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District23120006835.312.0
Fowler Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District25020005274.712.5
Franktown Fire DepartmentFire Protection District501810,00015543.96.8
Frederick-Firestone Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District253320,50026223.12.8
Galeton Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1705,5002267.53.1
Gateway-Unaweep Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1505739001.726.2
Genesee Fire RescueFire Protection District4024,00041050.010.5
Genoa Rural Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1003002504.033.3
Glacier View Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1901,5005633.912.7
Glade Park Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD14018005252.77.8
Glen Haven Area Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD2405003470.648.0
Glenwood Springs Fire DepartmentFire Protection District32121,0007233.31.1
Gold Hill Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District20030012166.766.7
Golden Gate Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2011,2005042.017.5
Granada Volunteer Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)803501800.022.9
Grand County Sheriff's DepartmentOther0014,000#VALUE!0.0
Grand Fire Protection District #1Fire Protection District2502,50015016.710.0
Grand Junction Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)012084,00077155.81.4
Grand Lake Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3051,50010533.323.3
Grand Valley Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District7335,20032012.57.7
Greater Eagle Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District30156,00019623.07.5
Greeley Fire DepartmentFire Authority0100100,00065153.81.0
Green Mountain Falls/Chipita Park Fire Protection DistrictNon-Governmental VFD1513,00016100.05.3
Gunnison - Crested Butte Regional AirportOther092005180.045.0
Gunnison Fire DepartmentFire Protection District32014,0002,7001.22.3
Gypsum Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District4544,68618526.510.5
Hale Fire & Rescue Department (Yuma County FPD)Fire Protection District25040010025.062.5
Hanging Lake Tunnel Fire DepartmentOther02520,00018138.91.3
Hanover Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD3809,50030012.74.0
Hartman Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD501005100.050.0
Hartsel Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District22109007504.335.6
Hasty-McClave Fire Department & Ambulance ServiceFire Protection District1202,5007801.54.8
Haswell Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD100654322.3153.8
Haxtun Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD3002,000402.57.515.0
Hillrose-Snyder Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1803,5002258.05.1
Hoehne Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1801,2009002.015.0
Holly Volunteer Fire & Ambulance DistrictOther1502,5009001.76.0
Holyoke Volunteer Fire Department (Holyoke FPD)Fire Protection District2402,5004405.59.6
Horsefly Volunteer Fire ProtectionNon-Governmental VFD30037516001.980.0
Hot Sulphur Springs-Parshall Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2109505042.022.1
Howard Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1602,0002564.08.0
Hudson Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District20610,00010624.52.6
Huerfano County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2004,0008202.45.0
Hugo Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Authority2301,50012601.815.3
Hygiene Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2503,2504555.67.7
Idalia Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma County FPD)Fire Protection District2205003506.344.0
Indian Hills Fire/RescueNon-Governmental VFD241130012208.319.2
Indian Peaks Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District20050011717.140.0
Indian Springs Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD80601087.4133.3
Inter-Canyon Fire/RescueFire Authority60010,00055109.16.0
Jackson 105 Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District23123,00015023.311.7
Jamestown Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD32030013200.0106.7
Jefferson-Como Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1553,5005253.85.7
Joes Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma County FPD)Fire Protection District17080010017.021.3
Johnstown Fire and RescueFire Protection District256100007243.13.1
Julesburg Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2702,00022122.713.5
Karval Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District19060010241.931.7
Kim Area Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1605502,0000.829.1
Kiowa County Fire Department (Kiowa County Sheriff's Office)Municipal (City or Town)2011,5001,7901.214.0
Kiowa Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2522,5003248.310.8
Kirk Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma County FPD)Fire Protection District1606001808.926.7
Kremmling Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1512,2004004.07.3
Kundalini Fire ManagementFire Authority602502300.024.0
La Jara Fire Department (Northwest Conejos County FPD)Fire Protection District180150015012.012.0
La Junta Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District36712,50036511.83.4
La Salle Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District25105,5008342.26.4
La Veta Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3001,20021014.325.0
Lafayette Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)121528,00010270.01.0
Lake City Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District14020007917.77.0
Lake Dillon Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District04550,00020022.50.9
Lake George Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1711,2002507.215.0
Lakeside Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD140212700.0666.7
Lamar Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)3278,00018216.74.9
Lands End Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2102,700195.4710.77.8
Larkspur Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District40156,00011050.09.2
Las Animas-Bent County Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2904,00015019.37.3
Leadville/Lake County Fire RescueMunicipal (City or Town)71012,0003764.51.4
Lefthand Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3722,5005275.015.6
Lewis-Arriola Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District290720027510.54.0
Limon Area Fire Protection DistrictFire Authority1502,5004073.76.0
Littleton Fire RescueMunicipal (City or Town)0123230,000100123.00.5
Livermore Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1501,5003104.810.0
Lochbuie Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)025,000633.30.4
Lockheed Martin Fire DeptIndustrial/Private22283,5003.51428.614.3
Log Hill Mesa Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3412,5007248.614.0
Long Canyon Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1245002800.032.0
Longmont Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)08382,00022.5368.91.0
Los Pinos Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District11178,0003258.63.5
Louisville Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District752025,00015633.33.8
Loveland Fire & Rescue DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)47585,00025031.60.9
Loveland Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District805323,00028646.55.8
Lower Valley Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District22912,500110.2928.12.5
Lyons Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3815,2007651.37.5
Mancos Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1602,5004535.66.4
Manitou Springs Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)4566,0006850.08.5
Manzanola Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1201,0004228.612.0
Maybell Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2004502,7000.744.4
Merino Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD17045012001.437.8
Milliken Fire DepartmentFire Protection District161110,0003479.42.7
Mineral County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2006508832.330.8
Moffat Fire DepartmentFire Protection District80#VALUE!#VALUE!
Monte Vista Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2007,74519610.22.6
Montrose Airport Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)0430,000#DIV/0!0.1
Montrose Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District63536,00018622.01.1
Mosca-Hooper Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2402,0003506.912.0
Mountain Communities Volunteer Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2109509921.222.1
Mountain View Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District26380,00022528.90.8
Nederland Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1745,0005637.54.2
New Raymer-Stoneham Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2705001,1002.554.0
North Central Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1302,1007517.36.2
North Fork Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3012,00030510.215.5
North Metro Fire Rescue DistrictFire Protection District099106,00011586.10.9
North Park Fire RescueMunicipal (City or Town)2501,7001,6281.514.7
North Routt Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1812,0004414.39.5
Northeast Conejos County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2002,4008.3241.08.3
Northeast Lincoln County FPD (Arriba FD)Fire Protection District1402203354.263.6
Northeast Teller County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3148,5008220.72.0
Northern Saguache County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District6013,0001,6033.820.3
Northwest Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District30132,28128315.218.9
Norwood - Redvale Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD3303,0006848.511.0
Nucla-Naturita Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District20122,0003591.416.0
Nunn Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1803,1605423.35.7
Oak Creek Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1532,0002656.89.0
Ohio City Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1501003050.0150.0
Olathe Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2506,00010025.04.2
Olney Springs Volunteer Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)901,8003003.05.0
Ordway Volunteer Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)1705,5009601.83.1
Otis Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1801,0005093.518.0
Ouray Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District2601,1005646.423.6
Ovid Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD30055015020.054.5
Pagosa Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District55612,50030020.34.9
Palisade Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)3625,3008.27459.57.2
Palmer Lake Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1802,7006300.06.7
Paonia Fire Department (Delta County FPD #2)Fire Protection District3105,40012524.85.7
Paradox Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1702354438.672.3
Pawnee Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1003005002.033.3
Peetz Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD2105005004.242.0
Penrose Volunteer Fire Department (Florence FPD)Non-Governmental VFD1916,00011018.23.3
Peterson Air Force Base Fire Dept.Department of Defense06313,0001,2774.94.8
Peyton Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District18013,00011016.41.4
Pinewood Springs Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District19080010190.023.8
Pitkin County Airport Fire RescueMunicipal (City or Town)01704425.0#DIV/0!
Pitkin Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1401008117.3140.0
Plateau Valley Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3656,000802.755.16.8
Platte Canyon Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District291410,00027115.94.3
Platte River Power Authority Fire/RescueIndustrial/Private203200#DIV/0!115.0
Platte Valley Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District4096,50022022.37.5
Platteville/Gilcrest Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District92013,00014420.12.2
Pleasant View Fire Department (Metropolitan District FD)Other3044,6002.51360.07.4
Pleasant View Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1502,5003544.26.0
Poudre Canyon Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District6001,5009960.640.0
Poudre Fire AuthorityFire Authority31167184,00023584.31.1
Pritchett Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD80183#VALUE!43.7
Prowers County Rural Fire DepartmentOther3018,0001,0263.03.9
Pueblo Depot Chemical Fire Dept.Industrial/Private0251,80020125.013.9
Pueblo Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)0140103,00044318.21.4
Pueblo Rural Fire DistrictFire Protection District02914,00015019.32.1
Pueblo West Fire DepartmentOther301830,0004998.01.6
Rangely Rural Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2802,5001,0002.811.2
Rattlesnake Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District5083,5006687.916.6
Red Creek Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD110800105.910.413.8
Red Feather Lakes Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1606009177.826.7
Red, White & Blue Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District04855,00013834.80.9
Rico Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District22025020011.088.0
Ridgway Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD2402,5007432.49.6
Rio Blanco Fire Protection District (Meeker Volunteer Fire & Rescue)Fire Protection District2802,7001,9401.410.4
Rist Canyon Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD3603,00012030.012.0
Rock Creek Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1203342574.735.9
Rockvale Volunteer Fire Department (Florence FPD)Fire Protection District804003266.720.0
Rocky Ford Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)1956,5007633.13.7
Rocky Mountain Arsenal Fire DepartmentDepartment of Defense01615001984.210.7
Rocky Mountain Fire DistrictFire Protection District13335,0006552.31.0
Romeo Fire Department (Northwest Conejos County FPD)Non-Governmental VFD1206753040.017.8
Royal Gorge Bridge & Park Fire Department61005827.6#DIV/0!
Rye Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1448,6002367.62.1
Sable-Altura Fire DepartmentFire Protection District4071,82326180.825.8
Saguache Fire Department (Northern Saguache County FPD)Fire Protection District26015009002.917.3
Salida Fire Department (not affiliated with South Arkansas FD)Municipal (City or Town)5106,00015100.02.5
Sand Hills Fire Department (Yuma Cty & Holyoke FPD)Fire Protection District1306010130.0216.7
Sargents Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD12030010012.040.0
Schriever Air Force Base Fire DepartmentDepartment of Defense0408,7006.5615.44.6
Security Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District522040,00035205.71.8
Sedgwick Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District27050021712.454.0
Seibert Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District140300#VALUE!46.7
Silverton San Juan Volunteer Fire DepartmentOther2901,50026111.519.3
Skyline Fire Protection District **Denver Fire covers fires for this district** (for 5 years now)Fire Protection District1833,30012100.06.4
Snowmass-Wildcat Fire Protection Dist.Fire Protection District0333,00021157.111.0
South Adams County Fire DistrictFire Protection District92738,00080123.82.6
South Arkansas Fire Protection District/Salida FireFire Protection District7102,50015113.36.8
South Conejos County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3002,50024012.512.0
South Fork Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District14010003633.914.0
South Metro Fire Rescue AuthorityFire Protection District0289198,000176164.21.5
South Metro Fire Rescue AuthorityFire Protection District0289198,000176164.21.5
Southeast Weld Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District201010,0004926.13.0
Southern Park County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2823,00024212.410.0
Southwest Adams County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District153435,00010490.01.4
Southwest Highway 115 Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2001,8003066.711.1
Southwest Washington County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1401,0009501.514.0
Spanish Peaks/Boncarbo Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3609006105.940.0
Springfield Fire DepartmentOther1502,0002,7000.67.5
Steamboat Springs Fire RescueMunicipal (City or Town)13212,0004806.92.8
Sterling Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)122224,0006005.71.4
Stonewall Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District5302,0005479.726.5
Strasburg Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1636,0002727.03.2
Stratmoor Hills Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District30610,0004900.03.6
Stratton Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1501,0004323.515.0
Sugar City Volunteer Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)1703003943.656.7
Sugar Loaf Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District4002,60017235.315.4
Suncor Energy USA Fire DepartmentIndustrial/Private6021,00016200.062.0
Sunshine Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2303404575.067.6
Tallahassee Rural Fire Protection AssociationFire Protection District3002,5003259.212.0
Telluride Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District6505,60035018.611.6
Thornton Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)088112,00027325.90.8
Timberline Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District4924,50017329.511.3
Towner Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD80200#VALUE!40.0
Tri-County Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1401,5004173.49.3
Tri-Lakes Monument Fire Protection DistrictFire Authority04418,0005580.02.4
Trinidad Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)0169,50011145.51.7
Two Buttes Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District802003262.540.0
U.S. Air Force Academy Fire DepartmentDepartment of Defense07820,00025312.03.9
Upper Huerfano Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1002,5003602.84.0
Upper Pine River Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3511,0002643.00.7
Ute Mountain Fire/EMSOther10122,0751,0002.210.6
Vail Fire and Emergency ServicesMunicipal (City or Town)0245,30013184.64.5
Vernon Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma County FPD)Fire Protection District2004003066.750.0
Villa Grove Fire Department (Northern Saguache County FPD)Fire Protection District903004502.030.0
Volunteer Fire Department of Big ElkOther22038520110.057.1
Vona Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2003204364.662.5
Wages Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma Rural FPD)Fire Protection District1602002506.480.0
Walsh Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD1401,2009001.611.7
Wauneta Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma County FPD)Fire Protection District22015018012.2146.7
Wellington Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District38115,00028813.52.6
West Cheyenne Fire Protection District (Kit Carson VFD)Fire Protection District2003009992.066.7
West Douglas County Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District4813,8005490.712.9
West Metro Fire RescueFire Protection District0335247,648110304.51.4
West Park Volunteer Fire DepartmentFire Protection District1501,5005300.010.0
West Routt Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1822,20020010.09.1
Western Fremont Fire Protection Dist.Fire Protection District1206001485.720.0
Westminster Fire DepartmentMunicipal (City or Town)0133106,00033.2400.61.3
Wet Mountain Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District3504,0006245.68.8
Wetmore Volunteer Fire DepartmentNon-Governmental VFD25070011022.735.7
Wheat Ridge Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District103335,00091177.83.0
Wiggins Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District2004,0004264.75.0
Wiley Fire Department/Wiley Rural Fire Protection DistrictNon-Governmental VFD2001,4009022.214.3
Willard Volunteer Fire Department IncorporatedNon-Governmental VFD1001201208.383.3
Windsor-Severance Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District353025,00011059.12.6
Wray Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma County FPD)Fire Protection District35010,0008004.43.5
Yampa Fire Protection DistrictFire Protection District1301,3003883.410.0
Yampa Valley Regional AirportOther0142203466.763.6
Yuma Volunteer Fire Department (Yuma Rural FPD)Fire Protection District3405,00012002.86.8

2 thoughts on “Colorado Short Thousands of Volunteer Firefighters, Say State Fire Chiefs

  1. To: Katie Kuntz & Burt Hubbard
    Regarding: Palmer Lake Volunteer Fire Department Update–current stats since Chief Margo Humes’s tenure began about 18 months ago.
    Date: 8/11/2015

    Officers 9
    Members 23
    Probationary 4
    Candidates 6
    Support 6
    Total 48

    If you would like to know more about PLVFD’s stellar recruitment efforts & results–including training, certifications and apparatus operator status–please contact Chief Margo Humes (719.776.0380) or Assistant Chief Russ Formica (720.648.0440).

    Judith Harrington
    Economic Development Trustee
    Town of Palmer Lake
    cell phone 719.229.9636

  2. I’m amazed,I must say. Seldom do I encounter a blog that’s equally educative and
    amusing, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head.
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