LIBERTY COUNTY, GA (WTOC) - People are still confused a day after an intense meeting with commissioners regarding a fire station shutdown in Liberty County.
The county closed the Eastern District Fire Station in Sunbury, citing a shortage of volunteer firefighters. Neighbors tell WTOC they still need answers when it comes to their fire and rescue protection.
The county says it will have a temporary lease on the Eastern District Fire Station building for up to a year, but they do not have the manpower to staff it. That means response times for some residents could now be up to 45 minutes.
The meeting got pretty heated as commissioners shared the new fire coverage plan, and they didn’t leave the floor open to discussion.
Liberty County Fire Chief Darby explained to residents that they would still have coverage - just 25 to 45 minutes away.
Residents say that’s unacceptable.
“When you start thinking 45 or even 25...responding to a house fire or a life...that’s a lot to be scared of,” said resident, Chris Nelson.
Commissioner Justin Frazier says they have money in their SPLOST to build two new stations in the Eastern District.
“From a commissioner’s standpoint, we are looking at the response times, and you know, it’s not just about fire services. It’s more about emergency services, because a lot of the 911 calls aren’t because of a fire,” Frazier said.
Nelson says he and his neighbors are just concerned about what could happen with not having the proper coverage and not having a solid answer on what will happen to their fire services,