Residents in the Blanchard area are safer from fires tonight. More than a year after an undetected fire destroyed their old central station, the firefighters of Caddo Fire District 1 are finally moving into a new building.
"We're operating," Chief Dan Cotten said. "We're still moving some things from the other stations a little at a time." Cotten says better precautions have been taken to keep this station safe from another blaze.
"It has the latest fire protection systems in it," he said. "Sprinkler systems, alarm systems and all those sort of things that we did not have in the older station."
The new building's price is a little more than $1.8 million dollars. Cotten says most of the cost has been covered by insurance money but the district needed a little help.
"We took out a bond to pay for the rest of it so we could build the station that we needed," Cotten said.
The station provides lots of space for firefighters to live and work while on duty. It should also put the public a little more at ease. Cotten says the new station puts firefighters back in a prime area.
"It gives us a quicker response time," he said. "It allows us to get on the scene and take care of a problem without a delay."
Cotten says an official opening ceremony will take place in October. Carter Construction won the bid to build the new central station.