Redings Mill Fire Protection District was founded in 1978 as a volunteer incorporation. In 1985 it become a fire protection district. We provide Fire Suppression, EMS, Rescue, and Haz-Mat responses for 110 square miles in Newton County Missouri. Our organization responds to over 1,500 requests for assistance annually, 40% being fire responses. RMFPD is a combination department comprised of full-time, part-time, and volunteer responders. We operate from five fire stations, two being staffed 24/7. Our ISO rating is a 4 in areas with fire hydrants and a 5 in areas with no hydrants.
The coverage area includes 8 villages/townships with a combined population of 2,500. The remainder of our jurisdiction is unincorporated with an estimated population of 15,000. Our area is part of the Joplin, Missouri Metropolitan Statistical Area, with an estimated population of 184,491. Located on the west side of the Ozarks, our district lines meet up with Kansas and Oklahoma. We have mutual aid agreements with 13 neighboring jurisdictions in Missouri, Oklahoma, and Kansas. Among the thirteen fire agencies, we respond to 190 automatic/mutual aids and receive 100 automatic/mutual aids annually. We also provide statewide mutual aid in Missouri as well as National deployment capabilities.
Our short history is full of great strides in protecting the public we serve. Our entire fire district became Missouri’s first FireWise USA Community in 2010. A recent review of the outcome showed a 24% reduction in wildland fires over the past 10 years. From 1978 to 1995 our agency was 100% volunteer. Over the years the need to add full-time staff due to the increase in call volume was necessary. In 1997 we began staffing our primary station 24/7 with four full-time personnel. In 2008, we increased our full-time staff from 4 to 12. By 2020 we have increased to a total of 20 full-time staff operating out of two stations staffed 24/7. In 2018 our State Regional Homeland Security Oversight Committee funded three new Type III Rescue Teams to improve access to water rescues resources. We were selected as one of the three new teams. Since then, we’ve made over 32 swift water and flood rescues in our district as well as provided mutual aid water rescue resources for 11 events in our neighboring jurisdictions. In 2020 we completed a grant funded project installing over 1,000 smoke detectors within trailer homes located in our response area. There have already been five success stories from the new detectors where the occupants were alerted to a home fire due to the detectors. We don’t sit idle waiting for the next call. We are always improving and embrace that constant change is imperative to our mission.