Biloxi Fire Chief Asking for New Station

Biloxi fire fighters put their lives on the line for the city’s residents every day. But now, it’s the fire fighters asking for help.
When a station was created in Ward 6 in the early 90s, the city put them in a three room trailer as a temporary home, but today, they’re still there. Chief Joe Boney said, “They have to run from one building to another when there is a call. The adverse weather is not so much an effect, though it can be as a response time, and that’s what concerns us.”
These fire fighters live out of a three room trailer and keep their truck in the maintenance department’s garage. City leaders say an upgrade here could drive down the cost of insurance in the area. “If we upgrade the facility, it means that the fire rating drops from a 3 to a 2,” said Councilman Kenny Glavan, “We would be the only city in the state with a 2 rating. Commercial development and residential, they would see their fire insurance drop.”
The new station would also include a new facility where fire fighters can sharpen their skills. “Right now, we have to use Keesler; we have to go to Gulfport to do a lot of our training. And our Biloxi fire fighters shouldn’t have to do that,” said Glavan.
Even though he’s ready for a change, Biloxi Fire Chief Joe Boney wants to set the record straight about the current facility. “Let me be clear, we provide the same level of service to that area as any other area in the city, but we simply feel that the community and the guys that work out there deserve more.”
The fire department says they plan to take the old truck, restore it and put it in a museum. They also hope to retire the old fire station and put these days long behind them. “And quite frankly, after 15 years, we think it’s a priority,” said Boney, “Somebody needs to step up and say enough is enough. I think the mayor has done that and the council as well.”
The fire chief says there is no time table on when the decision will be made to fund the $2.7 to $3.3 million station.

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