Chief’s Blog 002 OBFPD Seeks Community Input
I am an eternal optimist and will find something positive in every situation. As odd as 2020 was, the limited non-emergent public interaction provided time for us to do some essential strategic planning for the Fire District. We identified our strengths and weaknesses, we looked for opportunities to be of more value to the community, and we considered what threats we might encounter in our medium and long range future. Our people and financial stability topped the list of answers to the, “What are our strengths?” question. In the 18 months since being hired as the Fire Chief, I’ve been extremely impressed by the professionalism of our employees. There has not been a single instance that the firefighters were less than eager and prepared to assist the community and do whatever was asked of them. This strength along with our financial stability, realized by “living within our means”, is a testament to the former Fire Chief, Jeff Dorhauer and the Board of Directors who are steadfast in their responsibility to operate in a fiscally responsible manner. In contrast to these and many other strengths of this organization, we identified weaknesses as well. The top answers to this question are: 1) a lack of ability to respond to simultaneous calls for service, 2) a reduction in fire protection when an engine is out of service on EMS calls, 3) more than a mile setback from the main thoroughfare and lack of ease to respond in both directions on Osage Beach Parkway, 3) lack of providing Advanced Life Support (ALS) services, and 4) the wear and tear on our large fire apparatus responding to medical calls which make up 93% of 3,000 annual incidents.
Because of the strong foundation of this organization and our commitment to dedicated professional service, there is great opportunity to address the identified weaknesses, and our only threat is to neglect to plan for the future needs of the community. In the coming months I will be holding a series of public meetings seeking citizen input regarding the future plans of Osage Beach Fire Protection District.
We continue to provide professional, fast, reliable, on-the-spot emergency services to both full and part-time residents. The District Vision statement remains “Our Family Protecting Your Family Because We Care”.
Please stay safe and well in 2021.