Fire Department

, Monday 22 March 2021 - 19:02:56

The Portland Fire Department is now offering CPR/First Aid classes to the general public and Provider Level CPR.
Contact Fire Chief Mike Weitzel at 726-4500 for details.

Mission Statement

We will provide a safe and professional response to fire, medical and environmental emergencies. To minimize the loss of life and property through suppression, medical first response, rescue education, code enforcement, investigation and fire prevention.

History of the Portland Fire Department

The Portland Fire Department was founded in the 1880’s. An exact date has not been confirmed at this time. The First Fire Chief was Berkley G. Arthur (Bert).

On February 12, 1912, a group of ten men met at the fire department in a session for the purpose of starting an organization to be known as the Portland Volunteer Firemen’s Association. C.O. Headington was named the first president of the association.

In 1919 the City council voted to purchase their first motor powered fire engine. The truck was purchased from American LaFrance Fire Engine Company at a price of $10,250.00.

As the City of Portland progressed, the City council agreed to hire full-time firefighters to man the station thus creating the Portland Fire Department with 3 full-time firefighters and 20 volunteer firefighters.

In 1929 the city of Portland accepted a bid in the amount of $19,000.00 for the construction of a new fire station to be built on the same location as the old station. This new station was completed and occupied in 1930. An addition was added to the rear of this station in 1978 for the use of housing more apparatus, making this station 4,500 square feet.

In 2002 the City of Portland, Mayor Jim Hedges decided that the fire station was too small for as much as the city has grown, along with it the size and number of apparatus that the Fire Department had. The city decided to build a new station to replace the 1930 station but at a different location. This new station was the location of an existing building that was remodeled and completed in September 2003 at a cost of $775,000 with over 18,000 square feet and is located at 1616 N. Franklin St., and houses all of the department’s apparatus and equipment.

The Portland Fire Department today has 9 full-time firefighters and 24 part-time paid-on-call firefighters.  Current Chief: Mike Weitzel, Assistant Chief: Dustine Hilfiker, and Captain: Mitch Southworth. 

In 2020, we recorded 608 individual hours of training as a department.  These trainings included medical, vehicle extrication, fire operations and tactics, tours of local facilities, and online training classes or programs.  Unfortunately, this year we were limited on trainings due to COVID-19 canceling several planned trainings.       

The Department's fleet of apparatus includes a 75ft aerial ladder, fire engine, rescue engine, 2,100-gallon tanker, brush truck, utility/medical truck, command truck, foam trailer, boat w/trailer, and a fire safety trailer.

Truck 40: 2020 Chevrolet Z71.  T-40 serves as the Chief/Command vehicle on incidents.

Ladder 41: 1994 KME Excel (#2297) 75ft Fire Stix - 1250gpm/300gal. This unique apparatus was one of very few FireStix delivered in Indiana. L-41 very rarely leaves the Portland city limits, except for mutual aid with other city departments.

Engine 42: 2008 Spartan/Crimson Pumper - 1500gpm/1000 gal. E-42 is setup as the primary "City" pumper and is used primarily within the Portland city limits.  This engine also serves as the 1st out apparatus to all vehicle fires.

Engine 43: 2018 Spartan/Smeal Rescue Engine- 1500 gpm/1000 gal. E-43 is setup as the primary “County” Engine and is used primarily outside of the Portland City limits.  This engine also serves as the special operations engine for ice rescue, rope rescue, vehicle extrication, etc…

Tanker 45: 2001 Freightliner FL80/S&S (#4004) - 750gpm/2100 gal.  T-45 also serves the Portland Fire Department as a reserve engine.

Truck 46: 2006 GMC K3500/2001 Mertz - 200gpm/200gal. T-46 is first due for brush, grass and field fires in and around Portland.

Truck 47: 2014 F-350.  T-47 serves as the 1st out medical response vehicle for Portland Fire Department’s coverage area.  T-47 also is used for pulling water rescue boat, fire education/prevention trailer, general utility vehicle, etc…

Year End Reports

Total Incidents For 2020
City 535 (73.1%)
County 197 (26.9%)
Total 732
Type of Incident
Medical 492 66.8%
Medical OD 54 7.3%
Structure Fire 13 1.8%
Vegetation Fire 5 0.7%
Vehicle Fire 10 1.4%
Other Fire 25 3.4%
Smoke/Odor Investigation 23 3.1%
Hazmat/Carbon Monoxide Alarms 9 1.2%
MVA w/ Extrication 7 1.0%
MVA w/o Extrication 25 3.4%
Other Rescue 11 1.5%
False Calls/Alarms 51 6.9%
Service Calls 11 1.5%
Total Incidents by Township
Wayne 92 12.6%
Greene 33 4.5%
Pike 39 5.3%
Jefferson 19 2.6%
Other 14 1.9%



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