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Sneak Peek: See Johnston's Second Fire Station

Residents of Johnston voted in August 2011 to build a second fire station, as well as a new public safety building.

In less than two weeks, Johnston will become a two fire station town.

The long-awaited second fire station and police station annex is set to open on March 24.

The new, hi-tech building will service much of the west side of town, as well as, Grimes.

The second fire station, located at 62nd Avenue and 103rd Street, is part of a $14 million public safety referendum that passed in August 2011.

Three sets of two firefighter will staff the new station in 24-hour shifts, a first for Johnston.

The cities of Grimes and Johnston split the cost to cover the station, with each city hiring three firefighters.

One room in the building will be used, at times, to house a police officer.

The station was built to one day house five firefighters at a time, something fire chief Jim Krohse said will happen in the future.

"It could be in 10 years, but we built it to be here for 50 years," Krohse said. "We made sure to build for growth."

The fire station was built to house an ambulance, fire engine and tanker, chief Jim Krohse said.

"The design will negate having to back in," Krohse said of the pull-through bays. "We've had the trucks in here to adjust the exhaust."

The bay, which is equipped a special exhaust system, also includes a radiant heat system to heat stationary objects such as the walls and floor. The system allows the area to recover more quickly than the current station when bay doors open.

Firefighters will also be able to use a new fitness center in the building. The current station does not have a designated fitness room, instead weights are available for use in the bay area.

"The room is very key," Krohse said. "The number one killer of fire fighters is heart attack, so fitness is key."

The fitness room will be available to all Grimes Fire personnel, as well.

Another new feature for the station is a sprinkler system. The space is just under the size which requires a sprinkler system.

"Because I'm a big advocate for sprinklers, I thought it would be hypocritical to not have them here," he said.

The bay area of the building also includes a large flat-screen, but not to enjoy television shows or sports viewing.

The screen is part of the I Am Responding software the department uses to keep track of who is responding to a call.

"They can pick up their phone and dial a number," Krohse said. "Their name will show on the screen to say they are enroute to the station."

This saves critical time, and reduces response times for fire departments.

While the station was built to respond to calls mainly west of 86th Street, Krohse said the station will respond to other calls to determine what areas are better serviced from the second station.

The living quarters of the new station includes five recliners, five bunk rooms and two shower units.

Currently, Johnston fire personnel sleep in a portable classroom behind the building.

"This is a big advantage, all they have to do is make a left and quickly get out of the building," Krohse said.

The living space was meant to make the firefighters feel comfortable.

"It's comfortable and effective for the city," Krohse said. "This is their home while they are on duty."

While firefighters will begin staffing the station on March 24, an open house will be hosted on Friday, March 29 to officially open the station.

Sc March 14, 2013 at 12:02 PM
Why do they need five lazy boys and commercial appliances for two guys to be stationed there

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