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Barrington area fire agencies prepare to split equipment

Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District Trustee Paul Heinze (left), finance director/administrative assistant Kim Mueller and fire chief/administrator Jeff Swanson prepare for operations after its agreement with the village expires at the end of the year. | Photo submitted

Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District Trustee Paul Heinze (left), finance director/administrative assistant Kim Mueller and fire chief/administrator Jeff Swanson prepare for operations after its agreement with the village expires at the end of the year. | Photo submitted

Officials for the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District presented a detailed update to community leaders on their pending transition to independent operations Oct. 8 at the district’s Lake Barrington headquarters.

The briefing featured presentations by fire district vice president Marvin Hill, Trustee Paul Heinze, Fire Chief and Administrator Jeff Swanson and Robert Buhs, executive director of the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association.

Beginning in January, 33 firefighters and paramedics will operate from the Countryside Fire Protection District stations in Barrington Hills and Lake Barrington, expanding staffing levels and increasing the number of on-duty firefighters serving district residents. Officials said plans also call for each station to house an Advanced Life Support-equipped fire engine, ambulance and water tanker.

The fire district also addressed the division of equipment once jointly owned by the village of Barrington. Potential future plans, officials said, might include a new ladder truck, additional engines and tenders.

“The briefing was an opportunity to connect with the communities we serve in a relaxed, engaging setting,” Swanson explained. “More importantly, it offered a forum to answer questions and share our plans for ensuring delivery of superior fire and emergency medical services to district residents.”

Those who attended the briefing included officials from Barrington Hills, Lake Barrington, South Barrington, Inverness, Barrington Township and Cuba Township.

As a member of Mutual Aid Box Alarm System Division 4, the fire district has resources available for specialized emergency situations such as hazardous materials and water rescues, according to a district news release.

The release also stated that Swanson and the district are engaged with surrounding communities and fire protection districts to develop new automatic aid agreements.

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