In 1942 the City of Macclenny was decimated by the “Great Macclenny Fire”. From that tragedy Macclenny fire department was born. On August 4, 1942 City Councilmen unanimously voted to form a volunteer fire force. At that time bucket brigades were made up of anyone willing to help fight fires. In August of 1942 the city hired 15 volunteers at the rate of $1 per month and $1 dollar per hour during fire operations. The city also supplied the new department with a 1942 Ford American La France with firefighting equipment from Dinkins Motor Company for $3254.18. Since then Macclenny has grown substantially and so has the need for fire protection.
Macclenny Fire and Rescue now has 8 full-time employees as well as a strong volunteer force. MFRD has improved its equipment as well. MFRD is the proud owner of one of the largest fire engines in Florida. We also have back-up fire engines, two aerial trucks, a brush truck and multiple special response trailers. MFRD will continue to strive to provide the best fire protection and patient care possible to the citizens of Macclenny. It is an honor and a privilege for each and every member of MFRD to serve and protect this wonderful city.
Station #1 - 1983 Station #1 - 1996 Station #1 - 2014
MFRD APPARATUS HISTORY
The 1st Engine 1
In 1942 the City of Macclenny purchased the first fire truck from Dinkins Motor Company of Macclenny for $3,254.18 with equipment. The truck was a Ford / American La France. On May 15, 1948 this truck made the first out of county mutual aid to Baldwin, Florida after mid-night when their Public School caught fire. This truck along with a unit from the City of Jacksonville responded to the call. After being removed from service the truck was sold to Mr. Norris and used by the Macclenny Lions Club. Mr. Norris later donated the truck to Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL.
2nd Engine 1
In 1953 the City of Macclenny purchased land and built City Hall at its present location along with a bay for the city’s fire truck. The City ordered a new 1954 Ford V/8 American La France 500 gpm fire pump and 500 gallon water tank with hose and equipment. The 1954 Engine is now housed at Heritage Park for the public to enjoy.
3rd Engine 1
After a major fire at Northeast Florida State Hospital in the early 70’s, City Manager Dopson requested for the city to look at a contract with the State of Florida for fire protection, building a new free standing fire station and to purchase another new fire truck. The City borrowed $36,000.00 from Citizens Bank of Macclenny to order a 1972 F-900 cab over Ford / Howe, a 1,000 gallon water tank, and to purchase the land across the street from city hall to build a new two bay station. Old Engine One 1954 Ford was then changed to Engine Two. Upon being removed from service Engine One was donated to a volunteer fire department by the city commission in South Florida.
In1990, for $251,000, the City purchased a custom four door cab Emergency One Quint, equipped with a 1,500 GPM Fire Pump, 500 gallon water tank, 50’ ladder with a 1,000 gpm master stream fire nozzle at ladder tip, new hoses and air packs. The City also built an addition to the existing fire station to include new bays for the trucks, restrooms, kitchen, training area, offices, and bunk room.
In 1981 the city purchased its first diesel / automatic fire engine for $76,000.00. It was a GMC / Emergency One pumper truck equipped with a 1,000 gpm pump and 1,000 gallon water tank and no equipment. The 1982 Fire Engine became the first unit out and the 1972 engine went second out for calls. The 1954 Fire engine was removed from service.
In 1996 the city purchased a new custom Spartan / Ferrara Fire Engine fully equipped with a 1,250 gpm fire pump and 1,000 gallon water tank for $178,000.00. It came with an air compressor and supply tanks for recharging firefighters air packs. This truck became the first responding Engine company and responded to all State Mutual aid, from Bay County to Dade County from hurricanes to wild fires. The city has been reimbursed over half of the cost of the truck for rental fees for State of Emergency Disaster Responses. Today the truck is housed at the City’s Fire Station Two and responds as the first out unit at this station and second out for fires. This truck is equipped for vehicle extrications.
In 2003 the 1981 GMC Engine 1-Able was removed from service due to blown engine and transmission. The city purchased a 1972 custom Ward La France that had been total refurbished with a new open jump seat cab and fire body by the Jacksonville Fire Department in 1986 for $3,500.00. Engine Three responded to all fire calls, plus manned fire stations in Baker County during the fire storms of 2003, 2004 and 2007, along with mutual aid to the City of Lake Butler, Union County. In 2007 the truck was due to apply for a Fire Act Grant to be replaced because it did not meet the safety requirements for fire apparatus. Because of this truck the city received a FEMA Grant to replace it. Engine 3 had to be removed from fire service as a requirement of the grant and was sold for $1,500.00 to a private citizen at a public bid.