New fire chief plans for ‘worst case scenarios’
by Karen Kissiah Staff Writer
In a briefing meeting with Cheraw Town Council Tuesday evening Cheraw’s new Fire Chief Chris Sellers discussed some of his aspirations for the fire department.
“I am very pro-active,” said Sellers. “I like to pre-plan for the worst case scenario. It’s always better to be pro-active than reactive.”
Sellers plans to extend and elaborate on risk/analysis plans for each of the major industries in town, as well as any business that may deal with hazardous or flammable materials. “The more we know about where chemicals are located and exactly how they are stored,” said Sellers, “the more prepared we’ll be should disaster ever strike.”
“I’m excited about the new classes John L. will be teaching at the high school,” Sellers told council. John L. Melton resigned his position as fire chief last week to begin teaching fire fighting techniques in the high school classroom. “We’re hoping to eventually partner with the school to build a training facility there,” he said, although no official request has yet been made to the Chesterfield County School District.
There were a few questions raised during the meeting concerning the fire department’s ability to maintain its current excellent ISO rating of 4, which lowers insurance rates for home and business owners. The first question posed to Sellers, “Will the addition of the Country Club Acres and Deerfield neighborhoods effect the ISO rating?”
His answer was no, because they fall within the five mile radius the rating requires.
Cheraw Mayor Andy Ingram asked Sellers about the old Delta property, across the river in Wallace, that was annexed into the town prior to his election. “What type of liability is that Delta property over there sitting idle, and vacant? I assume the power is off.”
Sellers admitted there may be some concerns, but said, “it should not effect the ISO rating.”
There was more discussion about putting financial plans in place to purchase the long overdue ladder truck, but no decisions were made. The current ladder truck, a 1975 model, was purchased by the town in 1995, according to Cheraw Town Administrator Mike Smith. “We spent $38,000 in the first six months in repairs then,” said Smith.
Several council members indicated they would not object to getting a used ladder truck again, but that it should be less than 10 years old if they do.
— Staff Writer Karen Kissiah can be reached by calling 843-537-5261, or by email at email@example.com.
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