Founded in the late 1800s, the City of Iola Fire & EMS is – by manpower – the second largest fire department in Southeast Kansas and is the only department in the region to provide Fire, Rescue, Hazmat, and Ambulance services. Historically one of the first career fire departments in the State of Kansas, the department is staffed with 28 full-time firefighters and officers, all of whom are licensed at the EMT, Advanced EMT, or Paramedic level.
The department responds from two stations in the city of Iola as well as ambulance bases in the cities of Moran and Humboldt. Iola Fire & EMS provides structural, vehicular, and wildland firefighting services to the cities of Iola and Gas, as well as the surrounding rural area. The department provides Hazmat response and Advanced Life Support ambulance service to all of Allen County, as well as technical rescue and vehicle extrication to most of the county.
Our fleet consists of eighteen units, including three fire engines, one ladder truck, six ambulances, a rescue truck, a hazmat unit, a pumper/tanker, and a brush truck. The department has a personal watercraft (with trailer) for water rescue and operates two rescue boats owned by Allen County.
Iola Fire & EMS responds to over 300 fire, rescue, and hazmat calls per year, in addition to over 2,200 EMS calls, giving the department an average of seven responses per day. Iola Fire & EMS prides itself on professionalism and strives to provide excellent customer service in each and every interaction with the public.
Service is provided by three shifts working 24-hour rotations. In addition to Firefighter and EMS certifications, I.F.D. personnel possess advanced certifications and specialized qualifications in areas such as incident command, fire investigation, structure collapse rescue, pediatrics, farm machinery rescue, fire inspections, vehicle extrication, water rescue, emergency management, public education, rope rescue, burn life support, outdoor search & rescue, as well as numerous others.
Many of the fire department’s personnel live in the areas they serve and are active in the community. While off-duty, Iola firefighters are farmers, substitute teachers, mechanics, community volunteers, nurses, house painters, youth sports coaches, landscapers, foster parents, and ranch hands. Many I.F.D. personnel are current or former volunteer firefighters with other jurisdictions.
Iola Fire & EMS is an active emergency services partner agency throughout the region and the state. I.F.D. and its members are participants in Kansas Task Force 4, the Southeast Kansas Regional Hazmat Team, Region VI EMS Council, Southeast Kansas Firefighters Honor Guard, and Southeast Kansas Association of Fire Chiefs. The City’s Fire / EMS personnel and apparatuses are available to provide assistance regionally and nationwide and have deployed to Hurricane Katrina, the Joplin Tornado, and numerous large fires in Southeast Kansas.
In addition to responding to emergencies, Iola Fire & EMS provides numerous other services to Iola and Allen County. These include:
- Public Education & Workplace Safety
- Fire Inspections
- Interfacility Ambulance Transfers
- Youth Fire & Safety Education
- Smoke Detector Installations
- Fire Station Tours
- Standby Services for Sporting and Public Events
- CPR / AED and First Aid Education
- Public Speakers
- Fire & Disaster Drills
- Blood Pressure Checks
- Hydrant Flow Testing
- Medical Helicopter Standbys
- Fire / Arson Investigation