2022 FIRE DEPARTMENT ANNUAL REPORT
This year proved that our Lee’s Summit Fire Department personnel can adapt as we focused on returning to our new normal. While doing so, we also looked to continually improve, create and implement plans to keep us strategically moving forward. I am very proud that while we were adapting, focusing on improvement, creating and implementing plans, our personnel never lost sight of ensuring that we met our community’s expectations of providing a premier service in all facets of the organization.
Adapting to the new normal saw us bring back several items that were lost during the multi-year response to the COVID pandemic. Personnel continued to increase their training hours with multi-company training evolutions and minimum company standards. In addition to regular training evolutions, personnel began to refamiliarize themselves with local businesses as annual business life safety inspections returned for our companies.
In 2022, we were able to implement twelve expansion positions approved as part of the 2022 budget. The continued restructuring of command staff occurred with the deputy chief of administration and deputy chief of operations beginning in early January. These positions were created to provide a better span of control for the organization to ensure we were providing the necessary resources throughout our department. The deputy chief of administration had the responsibilities of the Prevention Division, EMS/Training Division, Support Services Division, and budget administration. The deputy chief of operations had the assignment of all operations chiefs and the Communications Division, allowing the focus for this position to be on creating and maintaining consistency across our three shifts.
While we were able to make great strides in adding personnel and planning for future expansions we also focused on adapting to an ever-changing vehicle acquisition process for all types of response vehicles. We have seen this process change drastically and prices rising at a rate never seen before. In anticipation of this continuing, the department recommended and received approval to enter into a lease-purchase agreement to acquire nine pumpers with Pierce Manufacturing. This is an increase in our fleet of two pumpers. The anticipated delivery is late 2024/early 2025 and not only will prove to provide the City with great cost savings over the next several years but will also provide a consistent fleet of pumpers throughout our system, easing the burden of our personnel to learn only one design versus several, ultimately decreasing the training hours needed to onboard new employees and create greater efficiencies when training new engineers.
One final enhancement accomplished this year focuses on employee health. The City and IAFF agreed as part of the most recently approved contract to become members of the newly established Missouri Firefighter Critical Illness Pool. Becoming a member of this pool establishes our commitment to ensuring we are following the most current recommendations to prevent cancer for our personnel. In addition to ensuring we are following best practices, it also ensures any firefighter with greater than five years of service will be supported in the event they ever receive a diagnosis of cancer directly linked to the fire service.
As you can see we made great progress in 2022, but I am even more excited about continuing this progress into 2023 as we will focus on updating our five-year strategic plan in early 2023 and implementing the expansion positions recommended as part of the public safety sales tax. I know we cannot accomplish these and future goals without the support of all of our personnel, city staff, elected officials and our community.
I profoundly appreciate serving as your fire chief!
Chief Mike Snider