Colorado Springs, CO – Today marks 125 years of professional fire service to the community. Fire protection transitioned from volunteer fire companies to the paid Colorado Springs Fire Department (CSFD) at 7 a.m. on Feb 12, 1894. The fire department staffing consisted of Fire Chief J. G. Johnson, Assistant Chief Nels Johnson and four firefighters. Chief Johnson came from Minneapolis and arrived in Colorado Springs on Feb 6, 1894. Today the CSFD has over 500 employees ranging from sworn firefighters to civilian support positions led by Fire Chief Ted Collas.
“Happy quasquicentennial!” writes Chief Collas in a department-wide correspondence. “When we were founded our mission was simple: to protect our community from the threat of fire. Over the years that singular mission has evolved into the CSFD becoming an all hazards, all risk fire department. As members of the CSFD, we stand on the success of those who came before us, those brave souls who put service before self and with little equipment, limited training, but steadfast determination kept Colorado Springs residents safe.”
In 2019, Colorado Springs Fire Department is a leader in the fire service, an Internationally Accredited All-Hazards Fire Department that responded to nearly 69,000 calls for services last year. Colorado Springs firefighters are trained in multiple disciplines ranging from structural to wildland firefighting, multi-faced emergency medical service delivery, hazardous material response, and specialty rescue. Colorado Springs firefighters are highly skilled, ready to respond at a moment’s notice to local emergencies, as well as trained and equipped to deploy to provide aid regionally and nationally.