West Tuckerton Volunteer Fire Company Inc
The West Tuckerton Volunteer Fire Company was formed in 1947 a little more than Sixty-nine years ago. Our firehouse was started by 28 firemen and with 30 ladies which made up the auxiliary. We now have 41 firefighters of which 12 are active life members on are rolls and one junior firefighter. Some of are members are cross trained as EMTs (8), and some are divers(10). Our first chief was, Richard Leitz served as chief for 24 years (1947 to 1971) the longest any one served as chief. The 7101 truck is dedicated to Chief Leitz. We have had only thirteen chiefs in our fire company history. The second longest term as Chief was Ed Rowe which was for ten years (1984-1993). The current Fire Chief is Robert Shahinian since 2013. Our first president was, Leo Van Worst served as president for our first year. In our history we have had a lot of presidents 27 to be exact. The longest serving President was William "OT" Hollingsworth, he served for 12 years from 1979-1999 inconsecutive. Our current President since 2013 is Jennie Hollingsworth.
Our current building was erected in 1966 a three bay garage with a kitchen and gear room pictured on the left. The picture on the right is of our station in February 1971 it shows are first new piece 1970 Ford Young. The main purpose for the bays other than to hold the truck was for bingo which was done for many years. The next year the company brought a second Ford Young pumper which served us up to 1994. In the late 80s an addition of 3 offices and a meeting room were added wear the overhang is in the picture above. In 2002 we add a two bay garage behind the firehouse to house the rescue boats and support vehicles along with the firehouse gym. The station was made bigger with the addition of about twenty feet on to the truck bays and some much needed renovations during the summer of 2015. In 2012 the fire company took deliver on two new trucks a pumper-rescue and a ladder truck just before super-storm Sandy came to town. The West Tuckerton Vol. Fire Co. responds to an area of 43 square miles in Little Egg Harbor Township, also know as Fire District #1, which was formed in 1979.
On average we run about 300 calls a year mostly fire alarms and MVCs. Most of the large scale fires that we have been involved in are mostly forest fires. The most recent local large forest fire was in 2005 when a fire started on the bombing range and burned to route 72 in Stafford Twp. a two day event. We run a lot of mutual aid calls to the so called big ones there has only been a few in the last ten years or so. In January of 1999, Tuckerton had the Redman Lodge fire which was a cold icy morning. In the early morning hours of October 31,2004 The New Gretna House burned down. The most recent big one we where apart of was the Seaside boardwalk fire in 2015. There has been a junkyard fire here and there. A few tanker (tender) calls to go to in and outside of our county along with plenty of coverage assignments. Our station has the only tower ladder for the township. Are response area is made up of The Garden State Parkway , U S route 9, and County highway 539 for are major roads. Are primary mutual aid is with Parkertown (Sta. 70), Mystic Islands (Sta. 72), New Gretna (Sta. 421), Tuckerton (Sta. 50) and Stafford as are FAST (RIT) team.