Tipp City's First Bucket Brigade Was Organized in 1872
Tipp City’s first bucket brigade consisted of fifty leather buckets, six hooks and ladders and six fire extinguishers. Two years later, in 1874, after several disastrous fires, a fully organized department was formed, equipment purchased and plans for an engine house made ( the old City Building at Third and Main Street). Charles Trupp was appointed first Fire Chief. The council required that “All enrolled members of the department must be sober and industrious men, and have an interest in the village.”
August of 1916, Council authorized the purchase of a motorized truck and a two wheeler trailer (Model T Ford) to transport equipment and men. Not to many men could ride due to the lack of room and horsepower of the truck. In 1935, a Mack 500 G.P.M. pumper was bought for $6,242. Tipp City Fire Department still maintains this truck for parades and funerals.
City Council Adopted the City’s First Fire Code in 1954
City Council adopted the city’s first Fire Code in 1954 covering conditions hazardous to life and property from fire and explosion. A new fire station was built in 1955 on the west side of the railroad tracks to prevent trains from stopping fire trucks from reaching fires on the west side of the city. The fire house cost $13,716.51 plus electrical wiring. In 1958 a new fire house was built behind the old city building on North Third Street. It cost $14,500 plus wiring and heating.
In 1963, the City Council awarded a contract for a Chevrolet station wagon that could be used as an ambulance in case of an emergency. It cost $2,434.41 and is still maintained by the department. The West Side Station was enlarged in 1976 to allow for the purchase of new fire trucks including a 75 foot aerial truck. The truck cost $151,900 and is still in service today.
City Council Approves an Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Department
Tipp City Emergency Medical Services was organized in April of 1975. Chief Lowell Hampton served as the first EMS Chief along with two ambulances and a twenty member all male and volunteer roster. Frings & Bayliff Funeral Home housed the first ambulance service for the community prior to 1975. The first part-time employee was hired in 1999 and the last purely volunteer responder retired in 2020.
City Council moves to hire a Chief of Emergency Services
The city’s emergency services continued to operate as two separate and distinct departments until March of 2019. The city council made a decision to hire a Chief of Emergency Services. A plan that had been discussed by the Fire & EMS Chiefs beginning in 2015. The department is now a combination staffed department which includes volunteer, part-time, and full time Assistant Chief and Chief. The volunteers are exclusively fire or dual certified at this time. All personnel are paid for their service to the community. The demands of EMS took a toll on volunteer EMS personnel. The last regular volunteer on EMS duty resigned in 2020.
EMS has witnessed the incident count rise from 1,315 in 2010 to 2,086 in 2019. Fire incidents have remained more consistent over the same time period and in the range of 302 to 401 per year. EMS incidents account for nearly 80% of the total call volume for the department.