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Paid fire service may expand in Berkeley County

June 07, 2002|by DAVE McMILLION

charlestown@herald-mail.com

Attack 90, a paid Berkeley County fire unit that is not automatically dispatched on all fire calls, would be called into duty more often under a proposal being considered by county fire officials.

Attack 90 currently does not respond on calls outside a three-mile radius around Martinsburg unless the initial volunteer fire company that was dispatched for the call does not respond within five minutes, fire officials say.

Under a new proposal being considered by county fire officials, Attack 90 automatically would be sent on all calls in the county except medical calls, according to Ed Calhoun, chairman of the Berkeley County Fire Board.

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The change is being considered for a couple reasons, Calhoun said.

First, the commissioners wanted to see Attack 90 used more fully, said Calhoun.

Second, the commissioners wanted county fire officials to come up with a way to expand the use of Attack 90 before they will seriously consider approving proposed increases in the county's fire fee.

Some concerns were raised about the proposal during the meeting of the Berkeley County Commission Thursday night.

Robbie Robinson, chairman of the Berkeley County Volunteer Fire and Rescue Association, said he is concerned about Attack 90 being dispatched on all fire calls in the county.

If Attack 90 were forced to respond to a brush fire on North Mountain, for example, it may not be available in the event of a serious house fire elsewhere in the county, said Robinson.

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