It has been said that volunteers run the world. In Fortuna, some 65 volunteers also protect the world – at least, that portion of it in their territory that is threatened by fire.
Fortuna’s Fire Department is operated totally by volunteers with the exception of the Fire Chief. Their five Fire Companies, including one in Campton Heights and one in Hydesville, answer calls any time of day or night, through rain, sleet or fog, holidays and weekends. The Fire District covers an area of approximately 26 square miles with a population of 15000. When the fire whistle blows, they answer the call. Firefighters leave meals half-eaten, jump out of bed in the middle of the night, rush out of parties or meetings or whatever activity they happen to be involved in when the fire siren sounds.
The Department participates in nearly every community event in Fortuna. Firefighters volunteer to put up and take down event banners and seasonal decorations. They enter fire trucks in parades and offer free rides on their antique fire engine. During rodeo week they organize water games for kids, as well as entertaining a crowd with a bit of friendly competition among themselves.
The Fire Protection District provides the Department with six fire engines, a 100’ aerial, a 55’ ladder truck, 2 water tenders, 1 light duty rescue truck, 1 medium duty rescue truck and three command vehicles.
A Board of Commissioners governs the Fire District. A Fire Chief and two Assistant Chiefs direct Department operations.