‘We’ve been able to make do for four decades’: Dilworth Fire Dept. in need of upgrades

The Dilworth Fire Dept. is in need of some upgrades.
The Dilworth Fire Dept. is in need of some upgrades.(Aaron Walling/KVLY)
Published: May. 21, 2022 at 6:43 PM CDT
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DILWORTH, M.N. (Valley News Live) - The Dilworth Fire Dept. has been operating in the same facility since the 1980s. With the rise of mutual aid and with more people moving into the area, the need for a new fire hall is becoming more apparent.

“We’ve been able to make do for four decades and with this it’s a step to do better for our firefighters and for our community.” said Chad Olson, the mayor of Dilworth.

According to the Clay County Sheriff and Dilworth Fire Chief Mark Empting, there is a long list of issues that need to be addressed. Empting said there is leaky fire hydrant, the area where they fill oxygen tanks is in the same garage with the fire trucks that put out diesel fumes and the fire fighters get dressed in cramp quarters near where the trucks take off.

“Well obviously it would be a great thing for the city to do and it would be great for our area as well,” said Fire Chief Empting. “We also mutual aid with every fire department in Clay County to include Moorhead.”

Right now, the city of Dilworth is looking to gain funds through the state of Minnesota to create a new facility in the same location as the old one. Currently there are 29 volunteer fire fighters, and the much needed upgrades would help as the town continues to grow.

“The fundamental premise of this is greater fire protection for our residents and with the expanding role that fire departments play also means quicker responses to medical emergencies and car accidents,” said Mayor Olson. “The facility itself does mean greater protection to our citizens.”

Fire Chief Empting hopes to have the funding in place and the new facility built in a year or two.

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