By the Winsted Volunteer Fire Department
Information updated February 2019
The Winsted Volunteer Fire Department was formed Dec. 3, 1889. The department’s first truck, a chain-driven Oshkosh, arrived in 1927.
In 1944, 33 feet of property was purchased for the construction of Winsted’s first fire station.
Over the years that followed, the bell was replaced by a siren and then by pagers, ambulance service was provided, fire trucks came and went, but one thing has stayed the same – the dedication and devotion of the volunteers who make up the volunteer fire department.
The fire department operates with a roster of up to 30 all-volunteer members. At the end of 2018, there were 22 members.
The Winsted Volunteer Fire Department serves the city of Winsted, along with Hollywood, Victor, Winsted, and Woodland townships.
As of Dec. 26, 2018, the department had responded to 242 calls. The total number of calls was 255 in 2017, 263 in 2016, 294 in 2015, and 230 in 2014.
Most of this year’s calls (189) were medical-related. There were also 17 fire-related calls, 12 involving hazardous conditions/accidents, 22 canceled calls, and two false alarms.
In addition to providing general fire suppression services, the Winsted Volunteer Fire Department also provides fire cause determination, fire prevention services, cold water rescue, auto extrication, hazardous materials response, Skywarn spotters, fire and medical coverage at Winstock, and hosts a spaghetti dinner the Thursday before Winstock and the annual firemen’s pancake breakfast the Sunday morning of the Winsted Summer Festival in August.
The Winsted Fire Department also operates a first-responder service, responding to all medical emergencies within its coverage area. The department operates with state-certified emergency medical technicians and certified first responders.
The fire department continues to utilize state grant funding for training classes. Some of those trainings consist of yearly mandatory Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), bloodborne pathogen, confined space and Haz-Mat training, and a driving course. Other classes include auto extrication, pump operators course, search and rescue, SCBA Air Management and the Firefighter Survivability Prop.
Additional training in 2018 included learning how to operate the new ladder truck.
One highlight of 2018 was when the department assisted with the 9/11 Never Forget Mobile Exhibit, which visited Winsted the second weekend in August. The exhibit is a 53-foot tractor-trailer that transforms into a 1,000-square-foot memorial. It travels around the country, educating citizens about the tragic terrorist attacks of 9/11.
The 2019 Winsted Fire Department officers and members include:
- Chief Brian Langenfeld
- Assistant Chief 1 Jon Davidson
- Assistant Chief 2 Troy Scherping
- Captain 1 Todd Koch
- Captain 2 Ryan Chatterton
- Captain 3 Kyle Thompson
- Mike Laxen
- Jim Koch
- Dale Gatz
- Charlie Fiecke
- Chad Stender
- Rose Heimerl
- Justin Hertzog
- Jamie Stender
- Samantha Condon
- Jake Hertzog
- Bryan Schaust
- Matthew Marketon
- Aaron Millerbernd
- Jason Zhang
- Michael Vanderlinde
- Brandon Posch