Fire department in Wisconsin starts new year with young crew; Firefighters in their 20s outnumber firefighters in their 50s, 10-to-1

  • Source: Superior Telegram
  • Published: 01/08/2020 12:00 AM

The Superior Fire Department rung in 2020 with a new building, a new chief, a new fire truck and new technology that will take their work into the digital cloud. It’s a young crew heading into the new year. Half the department has been there five years or less. Firefighters in their 20s outnumber firefighters in their 50s by 10-to-1. “The most senior person is not 50 years old — that has never happened in the history of the fire department," said Fire Chief Scott Gordon, 49. The loss of experience is a challenge, he said. In the fourth quarter of 2019, the department lost a cumulative 80 years of experience when former Fire Chief Steve Panger, Battalion Chief Steve Edwards and Captain Dave Johnson retired. It’s also an opportunity for change. Seven years ago, Panger inherited a veteran command staff. Gordon’s command staff has a cumulative three years of experience in administration.


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