Glendale Fire working to get to you faster

Posted at 6:14 PM, Apr 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-04-13 21:58:22-04

It’s one of the busiest fire stations in all of Glendale, located in one of the busiest, per capita, fire departments in the entire state.

Station 151 is located near 51st Avenue and Glendale Road. It’s home to an elite unit known as LA-151.

The mission is straight forward. 

The 2-person crew handles the calls that are not life and death emergencies, but still need urgent attention.

"The calls can range from fall injury, to an ill person, to an open hydrant, to a check your smoke detector call... you don't need a 4-person unit for that,” said Glendale Fire Department Deputy Chief Gary Benson.

Deputy Chief Benson is the brains behind the pilot program. 

He said the Glendale Fire Department quickly realized the needs of Glendale are changing, and so does the traditional fire department response.

"Before the LA unit, the low acuity unit, a 4-person unit that is an all hazard unit, with everything on it is going on a basic fall injury,” said Benson.

Benson said, frankly, sending a fire truck to those types of calls was a wasteful use of resources.

Since the LA unit program began, Benson says it’s paid dividends.

Stations 151 response time of 6:44 is among the best in the city.

"It really came back, overwhelming that they are doing a very good job, they are averaging 8 to 10 calls a day,” said Benson.

The Glendale Fire Department hopes to make the LA unit permanent, with plans to add a second unit in the northern part of the city.