A Dangerous Situation: Mariposa Fire Department Needs Volunteers - KMPH FOX 26 | Central San Joaquin Valley News Source

A Dangerous Situation: Mariposa Fire Department Needs Volunteers

Posted:
MARIPOSA, Calif. (KMPH) -

 The Mariposa Public Utility Fire Department is a volunteer force that has been around more than sixty years. However, the department might have to shut down if more people don't volunteer to be fire fighters. The department only has 7 members and one person in training.

James Dulcich owns a hardware store in downtown Mariposa, but the shop isn't the place Dulcich spends his time.

"It was just a natural thing for me to fall into the fire department," says Mariposa Fire Department Chief James Dulcich.

Dulcich has been a volunteer fire fighter for 45 years and he's been the department chief for 14 years. Over the years Dulcich says he's seen changes at the department.

"We had about 30 members back in those days and over the years it's just dwindled down to almost nothing," adds Dulcich.

The fire chief says one of his biggest worries with having such a small fire department is protecting historic structures, like the ones in Downtown Mariposa. Many of the buildings are more than a hundred years old.

"A lot of them have open space," says Dulcich, "The "Pizza Factory" fire that we had over a year ago had multiple roofs on it and we just couldn't get to it."

The department has a mutual aid agreement with Mariposa County and Cal Fire. Dulcich says Cal Fire fills in the gaps, but sometimes cal fire isn't available.

"Minutes count, it don't make no difference if it's a health issue or if you're having a heart attack or if it's a fire," says Dulcich, "The quicker you can get to a scene, the easier it is to offset what's going on."

Dulcich says he tries to recruit, but it's hard. People don't have the time they used to, but if more people don't volunteer the department might not be around at all.

"We'll probably be able to keep it going for awhile," says Dulcich, "Anytime any one of the volunteers' moves or change jobs that impacts us very heavily."

Another dilemma the fire department is facing Chief Dulcich is stepping down as chief next month. He'll still be a fire fighter, but he can't find anyone to take the top spot. If a new fire chief is not found, the department's administrative duties might have to be outsourced to another agency.

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer fire fighter in Mariposa, you can call the Mariposa Public Utility District at 209–966–2515.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • A Baby Boy Is Born At A North Fork Gas Station

    A Baby Boy Is Born At A North Fork Gas Station

    A woman on her way to a doctor's appointment suddenly goes into labor and ends up giving birth in a North Fork gas station parking lot.
    More >>
    A woman on her way to a doctor's appointment suddenly goes into labor and ends up giving birth in a North Fork gas station parking lot.

    More >>
  • Dinuba Residents Want Answers: Why Are Streets Full Of Water?

    Dinuba Residents Want Answers: Why Are Streets Full Of Water?

    People living in Dinuba say for nearly two weeks water from a broken valve has been flowing down gutters into storm drains.Residents say city crews are not answering their questions and they want answers on when it will be fixed.More >>
    People living in Dinuba say for nearly two weeks water from a broken valve has been flowing down gutters into storm drains.Residents say city crews are not answering their questions and they want answers on when it will be fixed.More >>
  • Helms Power Plant Turns 30

    Helms Power Plant Turns 30

    The Helms Pumped Storage Plant is now 30 years old. The engineering marvel has been undergoing a renovation in the past few years. Wednesday P.G. E. gave KMPH Fox 26 News a rare glimpse inside the hidden power plant in the high Sierra. The plant is located 50 miles east of Fresno and sits underground near Wishon Reservoir. Back in the 70's it took construction crews seven years to bore a cavern through the mountain of granite and create the plant for P.G. E. It takes two reservoirs to make He...More >>
    The Helms Pumped Storage Plant is now 30 years old. The engineering marvel has been undergoing a renovation in the past few years. Wednesday P.G. E. gave KMPH Fox 26 News a rare glimpse inside the hidden power plant in the high Sierra. The plant is located 50 miles east of Fresno and sits underground near Wishon Reservoir. Back in the 70's it took construction crews seven years to bore a cavern through the mountain of granite and create the plant for P.G. E. It takes two reservoirs to make He...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KMPH. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.