Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why does the fire engine respond when an ambulance is requested for a medical problem?

During a medical emergency, seconds count. All fire department personnel are trained Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and will often arrive before an ambulance. The firefighters can immediately initiate appropriate medical care and in more complicated medical emergencies, fire department paramedics will simultaneously be dispatched. Our department is committed to providing the highest level of care possible and this means getting our emergency personnel to you, as quickly as possible.

Our apparatus serve a multitude of purposes and are designed to address all potential risks that exist in our community (medical emergencies, motor vehicle accidents, structure fires, rescue and other calls for service). In the event of a subsequent fire call, personnel can respond immediately without needing to return to the fire station for the appropriate equipment.

Why do so many fire department personnel show up at a medical call?

The Thurston Communications 9-1-1 Call Center uses a criteria-based dispatching system to determine the appropriate types and numbers of resources to send on a medical emergency. For the most life threatening calls, such as a cardiac arrest, a combination of a fire engine, medic unit and an aid unit will respond.

In these circumstances, there are a number of critical tasks that need to be accomplished immediately, including:

  • Airway maintenance
  • Cardiac compressions
  • Oxygen therapy
  • Defibrillation
  • Administration of IV medications
  • Scene safety
  • Documentation
  • Care of the family

Cardiac arrest survival rates in Lacey Fire District 3 are over 40%, which is significantly higher than the national cardiac arrest survival rate of less than 15%.

What do firefighters do during their shift?

A firefighter’s day begins 7:30 a.m. at “tailboard”; a briefing between the off-going and oncoming shifts. After the morning briefing, our crews perform a comprehensive check of their equipment and apparatus to ensure that it is ready for emergency response. Firefighters then have scheduled activities including training, equipment and station maintenance, public education, building safety inspections, fire station and apparatus tours, blood pressure checks, bicycle helmet and physical conditioning.

More importantly, our personnel respond to more than 15,000 requests for emergency service annually.

What is my fire insurance rating?

The Washington Survey & Rating Bureau (WSRB) has classified our fire protection rating as Class 3.

This rating is used in determining your fire insurance rates. Check with your insurance company to see if they use the WSRB fire protection ratings and if so, what fire protection rating is assigned to your property. This phone call could save you money!

What if I have more questions about Lacey Fire District 3?

Please read more on our website or feel free to call us at 360-491-2410 or email your questions to info@laceyfire.com. You can also find us on social media:  Facebook at Lacey Fire District 3 , on Instagram and on Twitter @LaceyFireDist3.