Union City Volunteer Fire Department Struggles to Find Workers and Money

  • Source: WICU-TV NBC 12 Erie
  • Published: 06/22/2022 12:00 AM

Decades ago, when Larry Obert and Shirley Lafferty began volunteering at the Union City Volunteer Fire Department, the entire town turned out to extinguish a blaze. Now, a handful of people show up. "They would fight to get on the truck. Now, we leave the bay without enough members on the truck," Lafferty said. That decrease in manpower delays response times because volunteers have to be called in from surrounding departments further out in the county. "We should have 10, 12, 14 people at a house fire," Obert said. "Instead of having them there in 5 to 7 minutes, it's maybe 20 minutes. And the fire doesn't seem to want to wait. Once it starts, it's kind of like a racehorse going out of the gate. It's our job to stop it, not for it to stop and wait for us."


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