The department originally started in 1905 as bucket brigade to help minimize property loss due to fires. In 1907, this brigade was formally organized into the Broad Channel Volunteer Fire Association under its first Chief, Edward H.Schleuter. The current firehouse at 15 Noel Road was opened in the summer of 1908.. They received their fire charter from the state of New York in 1917 and were known from then on as the Broad Channel Volunteers.
In 1956 added volunteer ambulance services to provide first aid and ambulatory care to the residents of Broad Channel. On the summer weekends during the 1950's and 1960's, the FDNY would send Rockaway Eng Co. #267 to the Broad Channel Volunteers quarters to assist in answering alarms on the island. The reason for this was the bridges North and South of the island were draw bridges and would frequently be opening for large passing ships. This would impede response by FDNY, EMS & NYPD companies to the island for any type of major emergency. Also, Cross Bay Boulevard would be jammed by beach goers and those looking to vacation at Rockaways bungalows and hotels and its famous Rockaway Playland. FDNY firefighters would leave their engine parked and join the volunteers on their engines because they were much newer and more dependable then the apparatus FDNY had at the time.
The Broad Channel Volunteers, Inc. is a 501(C)3 Not-For-Profit organization that relies solely on door to door fundraising, grants from politicians and from the state, and for 102 years has operated 100% volunteer.
Established in 1922 as the Edgewater Camp Volunteer Hose Company No. 1 Inc.
The Department received its New York State Charter on January 22nd 1925“The object for which this corporation was formed was for the protection of persons and property against loss, injury or damage from fire, to own, purchase and maintain equipment and appliances for fire protection, and to drill and maintain the members in a proficient manner for their performance of their duty as Vol. Firemen.”
In the late 1920’s-early 1930’s the Edgewater Camp Vol. Hose Co. No. 1 Inc purchased their first motorized fire truck. This piece of apparatus was a 1924 Ford Model TT manufactured by the American La France Fire Apparatus Corp.. The department purchased this item from the Rockefeller estates in Pocantico Hills New York. Currently this piece of apparatus is still owned and maintained by the department. The Model TT is used in parades, fundraisers and was featured in the HBO series Boardwalk Empire.
On January 4Th 1950, the Edgewater Camp Volunteer Hose Company No. 1 Inc changed its name to Edgewater Park Volunteer Hose Company No. 1 Inc and still carries that name today.
The Gerrittsen Beach Volunteer Fire Department (a.k.a. "the Vollies"), is last remaining volunteer fire department in Brooklyn. It was organized in 1922 when Gerritsen Beach was a small summer-resort community. The name of the department is officially spelled Gerrittsen Beach Fire Department [sic]. In 1921, a damaging fire on Abbey Court demonstrated to the community that the city’s regular fire apparatus could not reach the beach in time to put out a fire. A mass meeting was called by the residents, and that resulted in the organization of the only volunteer fire department in Brooklyn.
The Vollies responded with medical aid to the victims of the jet airliner crash at 7th Avenue and Sterling Place, on December 16, 1960. Just three days after the New York air disaster, on December 19, 1960, the Vollies responded to the city’s call for assistance in fighting a blaze aboard the aircraft carrier USS Constitution at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. During heavy fog, the powerful beam of the department's Mack searchlight is used at Kennedy Airport when requested. When there was a major oil fire in Mill Basin in 1962, the Vollies responded with foam to help put it out. On 9/11 The Vollies assisted FDNY Battalion 33 by temporarily relocating their apparatus to the Firehouse of Engine 321 on Gerritsen Avenue and Avenue U when E321 responded to the WTC. Doing so allowed the Vollies to cover the response areas normally covered by E321 such as Marine Park and Sheepshead Bay while continuing to provide service to the residents of Gerritsen Beach. During the blizzard of 2010, the department responded rapidly to Gerritsen Beach while the EMS system was heavily delayed. During Hurricane Sandy the Gerrittsen Beach Fire Department assisted in evacuating and rescuing residents trapped by flood waters, In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy the department set up a relief center providing food, shelter, medical resources and agency support to its residents.
The Gerrittsen Beach Volunteer Fire Department has one fire engine and one ambulance.
Point Breeze organized in 1910, is part of the Breezy Point Cooperative a four square mile private beachfront community. When the department was established the nearest career firehouse was over five miles away. Today, Engine 329 is three miles away.
Today, the departments 75 members respond to 125 incidents, 9,000 full time residents living in 3,000 dwellings. The summer influx brings in approximately 3,000 additional residents.
Established in 1913, Rockaway Point serves the private beachfront communities of Rockaway Point & Breezy Point in the NYC borough of Queens.
Established in 1917, Roxbury VFD located at 42 State Road was originally a lumber yard. It was a high single bay over sized structure that has been modified over the years. A new International/Amthor 750 gpm four wheel drive pumper with a 210 gal tank was purchased in 1992.
When this department was established the nearest paid fire department was engine 168
WEST HAMILTON BEACH
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