Two massive fires in one day in the city of Troy have the firefighters’ union president continuing to call on city leaders for better staffing and another set of turnout gear.
“It needs to be addressed. We can’t wait for a grant,” said Eric Wisher, Troy Uniformed Firefighters Association president.
Wisher says the call volume has increased 40 percent over the years with new developments in the city. But staffing levels have remained the same, which is why he is now requesting four additional firefighters.
“When the engine is out, the ambulance is off duty, and when the ambulance is out, the engine is off duty. There [are] so many people to run both apparatus,” Wisher said.
As for the second set of turnout gear, Wisher says that is needed so firefighters won’t have to continuously wear gear contaminated with hazardous materials.
Fire Chief Eric McMahon says it is a concern, which is why a program to clean the gear after working fires was recently implemented.