Mantua Shalersville Fire Department Trucks

Mantua Shalersville Fire Department

The Mantua-Shalersville Fire Department is a combination full-time/part-time paid fire department located in Northern Portage County, Ohio. The Fire Department serves the residents and businesses of the Village of Mantua, Shalersville Township and Mantua Township. Providing 24 hour EMS and Fire Protection, the department consists of 8 Full-time Firefighter/Paramedics, 12 Part-time Firefighter/Paramedics, 11 Part-time Firefighter EMT’s, under the direction of a Part-time Fire Chief. Working from one fire station located at 10303 State Route 44, our call volume on average is just under 1500 runs per year with the majority being EMS oriented.

This site is designated to provide the residents we serve with up-to-date information about fire department news, community services, and equipment upgrades. It also provides an avenue for other fire service providers and information seekers to obtain information about us. Thank you and we hope you enjoy the site.

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A Brief History of the Mantua-Shalersville Fire Department

The Mantua Village Fire Department was established on May 20, 1901 by Village Council Ordinance. The name of "Mantua Hose Company #1" was given to this organization with H. A. Turner appointed as the first Fire Chief. This was the fifth fire department to organize in Portage County. Prior to 1901, a civilian Bucket Brigade was used to battle the fires that occurred in Mantua Village, which was known as "Mantua Station" prior to its incorporation in 1898. Village Council purchased a hand drawn 55-gallon chemical engine, four 6-gallon fire extinguishers and a 10" Gong in April 1901 for the new organization.

The 1880 fire bell at the Town Hall was used to call out the firemen when there was a fire in the village. All the members of the department at that time were true "volunteers", receiving no pay for their services. The village water system was also completed in 1902, which included 22 Corey fire hydrants and a 250,000 gallon reservoir. Although there had been many destructive fires in town over the years, it was the large East Prospect Street blaze of February 28, 1901 that pushed village council to finally organize a fire department and purchase specialized fire equipment.

In 1902, council purchased two hand-pulled hose carts, and 600’ of 2 ½" hose. A hand pulled hook and ladder wagon that carried 140 feet of wooden ground ladders was put in service. Beginning in 1909, the firemen were paid 40 cents an hour. The villages first "Fire Prevention Code" was also adopted by council in 1909, along with the first set of Rules and Regulations for the department.

In 1915, the department was operating six pieces of fire equipment out of the Livery on East Prospect Street. They were the hand drawn chemical engine, three hand drawn hose carts, the hand drawn hook and ladder wagon and a small hand drawn chemical extinguisher. There was an officer and 3 or 4 firemen assigned to each piece who were responsible for "turning out" with their assigned apparatus for each fire call.

In 1919, council purchased the department’s first motorized fire truck, a Ford model "T" 40-gallon chemical engine that cost $970.00. It was the second motorized fire engine in Portage County at the time. It was at this time that the village fire department began to respond to fires in Mantua and Shalersville Townships.

In 1928, council purchased the department’s first "triple combination" fire truck, a 400 GPM Seagrave "suburban" pumper with a 300-gallon water tank. The Department’s fleet of apparatus has been continually updated since that time. Most noteworthy, the first 1,500 GPM pumper (Seagrave) in Portage County in March of 1978, and the counties first 1,750 GPM pumper (Mack), in February of 1988 and the first 2,000 GPM pumper (Pierce) in August of 2000.

In 1946, the Mantua-Shalersville Fire Association was formed when Mantua Village, Mantua Township, and Shalersville Township entered into a formal contract to share all the cost in operating the joint Fire Department.

In 1959, the department’s first "Rescue Truck" was placed in-service, a Ford delivery van that was converted for heavy rescue and first-aid use by the firemen, 13 of them who were certified in advanced first-aid techniques. The truck was used to respond to an ever-increasing number of drownings, accidents, oxygen, and rescue calls.

In 1975, the Mantua-Shalersville Fire District was formed by voter approval. This provided for special tax levies to fund the department instead of taking money from the general funds of the three political subdivisions. In 2000, three levies, (Fire, EMS, Equipment) generated approximately $1,100,000 a year to fund the operation of the department.

In 1976, the department began providing EMT-A level first responder EMS, and in 1979, paramedic service was started. In 1981, the department’s first three full-time firefighter/paramedics were hired. The department began staffing the fire station 24 hours a day, seven days a week in 1995, when two more full-time fire/medics were hired. As of 2001 there were 6 full-time and 25 part-time members.

The department currently operates three ALS squads, one rescue pumper, one attack pumper, one tanker, a staff/utility vehicle, and a technical rescue bus. The fire station at Main and High Streets, which was built in 1867, is the oldest in Ohio.

The department responds to about 1,200 calls annually, and averages three to six working fires a year with an annual fire loss of $150,000 to $300,000. The department also averages well over 100 accident calls a year, many of them involving extrications, trauma, and fatalities, due to the 20 miles of state highways that crisscross the department’s 54 square mile jurisdiction.

Through the years, the department has evolved from a volunteer force whose primary concern was fire suppression, to today’s force that is a combination of full-time and part-time members. Their specialties include EMS, rescue, inspection, instruction, fire safety education, investigation, scuba, and haz-mat services to over 12,000 residents of the Fire/EMS District.

Other Interesting Accomplishments of the MSFD. The Mantua-Shalersville Fire Department has a long and rich tradition of providing progressive, high quality service to the Mantua-Shalersville Community. From the early beginning in 1901, through a depression and four wars, to the current dramatic changes of society today, the Mantua-Shalersville Fire Department will continue to strive for excellence.

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