Monday, December 28, 2015

Annual Report - 2015: Fire Department

The Department

The Franklin Fire Department is divided into two divisions: Operations and Maintenance, which is the largest and responsible for dispatch, emergency medical services, fire suppression and hazardous materials response. Administration and Support Services is responsible for personnel, budget and finance, training, code compliance and coordinating the Town’s emergency preparedness.
Franklin (MA) Fire Dept
Franklin (MA) Fire Dept

Our Mission

The mission of the Franklin Fire Department is to: 

  • Have a positive impact in the lives of citizens and visitors of Franklin in their time of crisis by providing compassionate, contemporary, community driven services.
  • Safeguard human life from the perils of fire, sudden illness, injury or other emergency medical condition, natural and man-made disasters as well as preserve the environment and property from ensuing destruction.
  • Be responsible for a safe, productive and pleasant work environment for our employees, and provide them opportunities to gain new skills and advance their personal career goals.

Operational Objectives

  • Initiating advanced life support to patients within 8 minutes of receiving the telephone call at our communications center.
  • To access, extricate, treat and transport and transport trauma patients to a level one trauma medical facility within one hour of the occurrence of the injury.
  • Interrupt the progression of fires in structures within 8 minutes of open flame ignition.
  • To insure response readiness remains greater than 70%.
  • Provide safety and survival skills for all school students in grade K through 5 consistent with the Student Awareness Fire Education (SAFE) initiative of the Commonwealth.
  • Provide educational opportunities for department members to insure optimal performance and safety.
  • To develop and maintain “best practice” to insure personnel and citizen safety.
  • Insure fire safety through timely, consistent code compliance services to all external customers.
  • Provide all department services in a manner that satisfies the needs of our customers.

Message from the Fire Chief

Fiscal Year 2015 ended as the busiest year in department history, with nearly 3,800 emergency responses. The department continued to enjoy the benefit of a Federal Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant that provided four replacement Firefighter/Paramedics positions that were lost in 2009. The SAFER Grant will expire in November of Fiscal Year 2016, and with the direction and assistance of the Town Administrator, the department will be able to maintain these positions through the balance of Fiscal Year 2016 and beyond.

This continued support is imperative given the response pattern the department has experienced over the past several years. Over that time, we have seen the number of calls for service that occur back-to-back or simultaneously grow steadily averaging nearly 380 calls per year over the past five years. Back-to-back or simultaneous calls are where the department receives another emergency call for service while managing a call for service (two at a time). Indeed the department, with the guidance of the Town Council has developed our resources to manage this scenario. What is concerning is the frequency of receiving three or more emergency calls simultaneously as we are quickly stripped of resources to respond and typically must rely on out of Town resources. Over the past five years the frequency of 3 or more simultaneous emergency responses has risen by 50%, totaling 360 events in Fiscal Year 2015.

The overwhelming majority of these responses involve requests for emergency medical services. In Fiscal Year 2015, this caused 138 ambulance responses from other Towns into Franklin. The increasing use of out-of-town resources causes delay in our ability to provide timely transport to the hospital emergency room. Franklin’s average response time is 5 minutes, 44 seconds; the average response time for an out-of town ambulance is 12 minutes, 33 seconds – this time difference can have a great impact on the quality of patient outcomes for people with medical emergencies.

This trend of call distribution is compounded by the increasing calls for services. As previously noted, the department responded to nearly 3,800 emergency responses in Fiscal Year 2015, an increase of more than 10% from Fiscal year 2014. We believe this trend is in response to an upturn in our economy. This year saw increased occupancy rates in the Town’s Industrial Parks as well as opening of new businesses and facilities. All of these combine to bring more people into the community and increase our demands for services. We will continue to monitor all of these trends and work with the community to develop strategies to maintain acceptable levels of emergency services within the Town.

The year we welcomed Michael Berthiaume to the department. Mike is a graduate of Franklin High School and comes to the department by way of the Bourne Fire Department – we look forward to his contributions.

Additionally, this year saw the promotion of Joseph Barbieri to the rank of Captain. Joe will be responsible for the department’s fire prevention and life safety operations and brings a great deal of energy and education to this position.

Firefighter Keith Darling has been appointed as the department’s SAFE Officer, responsible for safety training and education for the Town’s young and senior populations.

Congratulations to both!

In addition to emergency response, the department also continued to try to expand its fire prevention education activities, providing safety and survival education to the most vulnerable population to fire – our children and seniors. Through the dedicated efforts of SAFE Officer Keith Darling, the department continued to educate over 100 children per month as well as attend various activities at the Senior Center. This year the department began offering home visit for our senior citizens. The focus of these visits is to insure there are working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, remove trip hazards as well as provide safety education. Lieutenant Tom Carlucci with Firefighter Doug Perro, Paul Molla and Bill Blanchard provide dedicated assistance in completing this important service to our citizens.

Our employees continue to be the chief reason for maintaining our current the level of success and level of services we provide our citizens. They continue to work tirelessly to protect life and property within Franklin. In addition to their on-duty responses, our employees commit countless hours in continuing education and training targeted to maintain and improved upon their emergency skills. Additionally, they continue to press forward in attempt to provide the highest level of service to the community based upon advancement in the fire-rescue field and advancements in technology. These efforts have yielded significant and broad insight into the requirements necessary to maintain and improve upon the services we provide to the citizens of Franklin.

Respectfully Submitted,
Gary B. McCarraher, Fire Chief


For additional information, visit the Fire Dept on the Town of Franklin webpage

Franklin Fire Station #1 - West Central St
Franklin Fire Station #1 - West Central St
Additional photos on the fire stations and equipment can be found here

Quarterly Scorecard for 4Q - 2015 Franklin Fire Dept
Quarterly Scorecard for 4Q - 2015 Franklin Fire Dept

additional performance scorecards can be found here


"Prior to November 1 of each year, the Town Clerk shall cause to be prepared and made available to the inhabitants of the Town an annual report for the preceding fiscal year which shall include: the annual Town budget, the reports of all Town officers, the records of all Town Council bylaw amendments and resolutions, an abstract of births, marriages and deaths, and the wages, salaries, or other compensation of all Town employees." [Added 5-2-2012 by Bylaw Amendment 12-681]

Shared from the full and complete PDF version of the Town of Franklin Annual Report for 2015

No comments:

Post a Comment