December 2nd, 2014
To all Fire Police, Fire Companies/Departments, Law Enforcement Agencies, Municipalities and Event Coordinators:
The issue of Fire Police rendering assistance at non-emergency events has been confusing and problematic for years here in Berks County. For many years, the Fire Police Association of Berks County has furnished a “Request for Assistance Form” to make the process easy. As of January 1, 2013 we have eliminated and will no longer accept this document. As a service to our members and municipalities requesting non-emergency event assistance, the Association will develop a section on our website to view and download Municipal Authorizations for Non-Emergency Event Fire Police Assistance. It shall be the responsibility of the Fire Police that would like to help another municipality at non-emergency events to get the permission to do so from their municipality that grants them the authority to be Fire Police!!!
There are many different ways to gain or permanently possess this permission to serve in other municipalities for non-emergency events. It shall be the Member of the Fire Police Unit’s responsibility to know what their local policies, ordinances, resolutions and procedures are in order to render assistance in other municipalities during non-emergency events.
All non-emergency events must have the authorization of the municipality to approve the use of Fire Police at non-emergency events. The process for a Municipality to authorize the use of Fire Police at non-emergency events are accomplished many different ways: Some Municipalities grant their Municipal Police Department the authority to approve the use of Fire Police for non-emergency events. Some Municipalities do not. Some Municipalities grant their Local Fire Company/Department the authority to approve the use of Fire Police for non-emergency events. Some Municipalities do not. Some Municipalities require that all authority granted to Fire Police for non-emergency events be passed by resolution for every single event at a Municipal Meeting. Some Municipalities grant the Mayor or Chair of the Board of Supervisors the authority to approve Fire Police for non-emergency events. The Fire Police Association of Berks County will not interfere with Local Fire Police Policy.
It is the absolute right of Law for your Local Municipality to permit or deny Fire Police activity/authority at non-emergency events. If you have no permission, you violate the Law.
The person who should be coordinating Fire Police activity for non-emergency events should be the Fire Police Captain. The Fire Police Captain needs to cooperate with the Municipal Officials, Event Organizers, Police Department, Fire Company, Home Fire Police Unit and Assisting Fire Police Units. In turn when all authorizations are processed and in order, the Fire Police Association of Berks County will place the municipalities’ official authorization for Fire Police assistance on our website.
The Association is exploring alternative means
of communicating with our members to help. We strongly suggest that our members
attend Fire Police Meetings and State Approved Fire Police Training. We discuss
many of our problems and situations at these forums and when decades of
experienced people come together it may help. Also, the manpower that is needed
for your non-emergency event may be at a meeting or training session and
details may be worked out.
Fire police Association of Berks County
I would like to take a moment to express my gratitude and appreciation for all who assisted with the incident on Rt. 222 in Maiden Creek Township on Wednesday, November 19th. When a major incident such as this occurs on the 222 artery in northern Berks it is very difficult to keep traffic moving on the smaller side roads and through Blandon and Fleetwood. PennDot representatives were on scene relatively early to help coordinate the detouring of the south bound traffic which helped to alleviate some of the headaches we had to deal with. I certainly do not want to miss anyone, but I wish to thank everyone who responded and assisted:
Spring Township (85)
Trexlertown (Lehigh 25)
Without your help and willingness to give of your time, we never could have gotten through the mess in the relative ease with which it was accomplished.
Again, a million thanks to all. Stay safe...
Peter Laucks, Fire Police CaptainFleetwood Vol. Fire Company