Copied from Recruit Manual: NEEDS EDITED
Tri-Community Fire department was formed because of a concern for the lack of fire protection in the communities of Apison, Collegedale, and Ooltewah. In its first year, the Department responded to 22 alarms. Since October 1952, Tri-Community Volunteer Fire Dept. has endured bad times and soared to new heights.
Six months after the Department was founded, Robert C. Stanford was killed as he cut a fallen high-tension wire.
In 1954, TCFD took its first big step by purchasing a commercially built class A pumper engine.
By 1963, Tri-Community moved into its first station with bays and living quarters for two firefighters on Apison Pike.
TCFD expanded service into Highway 58 in 1972.
Sept. 25, 1972, Kayo Oil Company Storage Fire
In July 1973, Tri-Community expanded into Hixson, making Tri-Community the largest Volunteer Fire Department in the state by area. With a total of twenty pieces of equipment, the Department was answering 800 fire calls and 400 ambulance calls per year.
During 1975, a pullback to our current district boundaries was necessary due to changes in state and local laws. With our help, Dallas Bay and Highway 58 Volunteer Departments were organized.
By 1979, Tri-Community expanded to its second station on Standifer Gap.
Sadly, this year brought the second firefighter killed in the line of duty. Firefighter Stewart Gandy died in a structure fire on Woodland Drive and is now honored by the Department by naming its “Rookie of the Year” award, “The Gandy Award”.
During the years of 1982 and 1983, TCFD began a process that continues even today, the campaign to lower the Department's ISO rating. This dream became a reality when Tri-Community became the first fire department in our region to be a class 6 with the use of a Tanker shuttle system.
We also opened our fourth station in Ooltewah.
The next few years (1985-1988) saw the organization and fine tuning of the department apparatus assignments, maintenance, and standard operating procedures were improved. Tri-Community Fire Department and its sister agency Tri-Community Ambulance Service flourished into organizations gaining both in membership, financial stability, and operational efficiency
In 1988, the Department placed in service two new vehicles. One was the largest single purchase to date, a $188,000 E-One pumper-tanker and affectionately known as The Pickle. This fire truck was the first of its kind in our region. Also placed in service was a light duty rescue service.
1988: Dispatching and ambulance services were transferred to Hamilton County, through its office of Emergency Management. A new fire station was constructed in Apison.
1988: Then one fall night, TCFD was dispatched to a fire in Oakies Plaza. Upon arrival, we found the occupancy next to our Ooltewah fire station fully engulfed in flames. As tough as it was, we were forced through proper strategy and tactics to literally burn down and destroy our fire station. That station's apparatus laid lines on its own building. We saved the complex, but lost a fire station.
By 1989 and 1990, the decisions affecting the EMS Division and ambulance service were addressed. The ambulance service was closed and by the next year the Medical And Support Team or MAST was formed.
1991 and 1992 saw reorganization in administration and chain of command. By 1993, TCFD moved into a new station one and leased all of the old city hall. This allowed expansion in training and maintenance operation in the old station one.
In 1994, our first Recruit and Probationary Fire classes graduated.
1995 saw the arrival of a new aerial apparatus, an 85' elevation platform. Also placed in service was an engine with a class A foam system, again another first for our region.
1996 was a year of hard work that paid off. Tri-Community Volunteer Fire Dept. succeeded in achieving an ISO rating of 4, making Tri-Community the only volunteer dept. in the state of Tennessee to ever achieve such a rating.
The confined space rescue team was organized. Plans were made for future stations 2 and 6, while station 4 received a face-lift.
YEAR? Station 2 built on Mountain View Road
2016: New Station 3 built
History about our Trucks
History on Air Packs
Fuel Storage Tank Fire 1972
On the morning of Sept. 25, 1972 at 6:19 am, the Department answered an alarm at the Kayo Oil Company Storage Depot. At 6:38 am the tanks exploded and resulted in the largest fire in the history of Hamilton County. With help from local Fire Departments, the fire was successfully brought under control within 24 hours. TCFD was the first fire department to successfully extinguish a fire in a fuel storage tank with sub-surface foam injection. The Department gained world news coverage and recognition by National Fire Publications.