Rockwood's Fire Station No. 2 damaged by flooding

By: Hilary Magacs Email
By: Hilary Magacs Email

ROCKWOOD, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Fans are airing out Rockwood's Fire Station No. 2 and furniture is piled up. The station is temporarily out of service after rain hit East Tennessee hard about two weeks ago, flooding the station.

"We think it just came in through the walls, the joints and everything. The building is built into the basement of the old Methodist church that burned in 1956. So we're not really sure how old the structure is, the sbustructure - it could be as old as 100 years," said Assistant Fire Chief Matthew Crabtree.

The flooding forced the fire department to move the fire truck parked at Station No. 2 to its main station on Front Street. Because of that, an ambulance that normally parks at the main fire station had to move back to EMS headquarters in Midtown. There's just no room inside.

"It's my understanding that they can't leave it out in the sun because the heat affectsthe drugs that they carry. So they need to take it back to somewhere where they can park inside," said Crabtree.

Some are concerned about longer response times.

"God forbid something happened to my son or something like that. I would want immediate assistance," said Lenny Marsh, who lives in Rockwood.

Crabtree said people shouldn't worry.

"Well, we run first response here and the volunteer fire department that handles everything outside of our jurisdiciton on this end of the county, they run first response. So I feel confident that no one will go without medical care in the brief time it'll take them to get here from Midtown," said Crabtree.

Rockwood's City Recorder said the city will likely repair Fire Station No. 2 - or open another station - in order to keep its fire rating and insurance costs the same, so the ambulance move is probably temporary.

Advisors from UT will help officials decide if it's best to fix the flooded fire station or move elsewhere.

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