ROCK SPRINGS – Plans for a new fire station for Sweetwater County Fire District No. 1 are moving forward. Not only will it cut down on response time to fires and other incidents, it will also reduce insurance costs to residents north of Rock Springs.
While officials said the fire station is on track, Sweetwater Fire District No. 1 Chief Jim Wamsley stressed more about the project would be known at the district board meeting this Tuesday.
If everything goes as planned, the station will be built north of Rock Springs out by the cemetery. The district is hoping to start construction in late spring or early summer although Wamsley pointed to early summer.
“This is where the highest growth rate is in our district,” Assistant Fire Chief Scott Ktichner said.
Not only will there be a station, the new development will also include a training ground include a burn town and building. Currently, the district uses the Rock Springs Fire Department’s training grounds on Elk Street, and Kitchner said while it is great the RSFD lets them use it, sometimes with scheduling it can get complicated. With the new facility, Kitchner said they will be able to use it when they need it, “It’s easier, it’s a modern facility with more room,” Kitchner said. “It will allow us to do it all in one spot which will help everything out.”
Chief Wamsley also talked about another unique feature to the development, a dorm complex. Wamsley said they were trying to attract college students who may be looking for a career or experience in firefighting. Wamsley said that referring not just to the dorms but the whole complex. They are hoping more residents north or Rock Springs will come out and volunteer because they know the area.
Another big plus for residents is the insurance rating. If homeowners are outside a five-mile radius of fire response, they have to pay extra for fire insurance.
By building this station, Wamsley said it will lower the insurance cost for residents north of Rock Springs. It is usually a 65 percent increase in premiums by being outside the five miles.
Recently, the Sweetwater County Commissioners lifted the construction moratorium on Reliance after upgrades were finished to the water system.
Reliance also falls within the are Sweetwater County Fire District No. 1 serves. Wamsley said the new station will be constructed in a way that will allow them to shoot directly to JY Road and across to Reliance. “I think the value added will benefit the community as a whole,” Wamsley closed.