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          Carrollton Volunteer Fire Department
a brief history
If you have questions or comments regarding any History information please email us at web@carrolltonfiredept.org

The Carrollton Volunteer Fire Department was chartered in January 1966. Prior to 1966, the Smithfield Volunteer Fire Department and the Nansemond County Fire Department answered calls for help in the Carrollton area. Local citizens and the Carrollton Ruritans joined forces to organize the Fire Department. The first Fire Truck was a 1941 International pumper, given to the newly formed department from the Department of Civil Defense through the City of Portsmouth. This truck was known as Unit 11 it had a 500 GPM pump and a 400 gallon tank. Shortly afterwards a used mid 50's model Chevrolet 1500 gallon tanker was obtained, this truck was known as Unit 10. These trucks were stored in a local shed/barn. In 1967 our Fire Station was constructed. The original 36 X 70 structure is still a part of our current Fire Station and serves as our classroom. This structure was primarily constructed by FD members and was funded solely by donations and loans. Funds to support our department were raised in various ways, but the long standing pit cooked BBQ is still the mainstay of fund raising activities used to support the Carrollton Volunteer Department. Held twice a year in April and October, CVFD BBQ is a time for our community to come together and support our Fire Department and get some great Carolina style pit cooked (still with wood) BBQ. We currently serve well over 2000 folks, cooking on the average of 22 whole hogs per BBQ.

1969 was truly a bitter sweet year for the Carrollton Volunteer Fire Department. Our original Fire Chief, Claude Taylor, was taken from us at a house fire on January 5, 1969. While combating the fire, Chief Taylor suffered a massive heart attack and died on the scene at the age of 62. He was the first and still the only Fire Fighter in Isle of Wight County to pay the ultimate price in the line of duty. Though this devastated our newly formed department, we struggled and continued to proudly and professionally serve the citizens of Carrollton. Also in 1969 a "new" fire truck was purchased. A 1952 Ford American La France was purchased from the Jack Slagle Fire Equipment Company for $6,000. This truck then became the primary fire truck for CVFD. It had a 500 GPM pump and a 500 gallon tank. It was known as Unit 12. In 1969 the operating budget received from Isle of Wight county was a mere $300.00. We currently receive over $90,000.00 from the county which is actually less than half of our complete operating budget. In 1969 CVFD answered just under 50 calls. We expect to exceed 1000 calls in 2011. Another big step in 1969 was the development of the Isle of Wight County Dispatch System. This eliminated the old "in house" phone system were the department was responsible for contacting each other by phone when we had a call. With this new system in place, calls were made to the Sheriff's Office and a dispatcher set off the "tones" to alert us through our new Plectrons. This new system was also tied to our two sirens, one at the Fire Station and one on Muddy Cove Circle which was latter moved to Sugar Hill Rd.
 
1970 was a big year for CVFD as our first Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBAs) were placed in to service. Two Survive Air Air Packs were purchased by our Ladies Auxiliary for the price of $775.91. As in most things with CVFD, we have held to tradition as we have always utilized Survive Air SCBAs. In 1970 we also started selling Christmas Trees as a fund raiser. This was a short lived venture that was resurrected in 2001 and has since become not only very enjoyable but an extremely profitable fund raising venture for CVFD.

1971 and 1972 were years of many additions to our Fire Station. First we completed additions to the rear of the Fire Station which included a kitchen and two bathrooms. A utility building was also constructed behind the Fire Station to be used to pit-cook pigs for the BBQ fund raiser events. Prior to this the pigs were cooked at Mr. James Baldwin's house and brought to the Fire Station to be chopped and served.

1973 was another big year and a huge leap forward for CVFD. A brand new 1973 Ford C-900 John Beam pumper was delivered. This truck was bought from Slagle's for $23,000.00. It had a 750 GPM 2 stage pump and a 1000 gallon tank. This truck took the place of the 1941 International becoming our new Unit 11

1978 also brought a major equipment addition to CVFD. A brand new 1978 Ford C-8000 FMC pumper was delivered. Like the 1973 model, this truck was also bought from Slagle's. The price tag was $32,000.00. This truck had a 1000 GPM 2 stage pump and a 750 gallon tank. This truck replaced both the 1952 Ford and the tanker. It became Unit 12. It was first out on all calls, Unit 11 became the department's tanker.
 
1980 brought an addition to the Fire Station by way of an additional engine bay and a much needed training classroom. We also purchased a 1980 Ford F-250 Robinson brush truck. This truck was designated Unit 14. This truck stayed in service until 2011 when it was replaced. 1980 brought about changes in alerting our members as we started to purchase Motorola Minitor Pagers which greatly increased the ability to alert members when there was an emergency call.
 
1985 CVFD changed it's truck designations from Units to Engines as follows: 1973 Ford/Beam Engine 11, 1978 Ford/FMC Engine 12 and the 1980 Brush Truck became Brush 14.
 
1988 Engine 11 was refurbished by Slagle's to include some cosmetic upgrades and the addition of a 6" Jet Dump. A 2000 gallon drop tank was added as well as the implementation of 3" hose for the first time. These up grades further increased this truck's abilities as CVFD's tanker.
1989 The Fire Department made it's first large scale purchase of turn out gear bringing all of it's active member to current standards. Membership in 1989 was 25.
 
1990 Once again, another major investment was made with purchase of a 1990 Ford C-8000 Grumman pumper. This truck is equipped with a 1250 GPM pump, a 1000 gallon tank with a 6" jet dump and 7.5 KW diesel generator. Engine 15 as it was called was primarily used as a Tanker. This Truck was purchased from Fire X for $147,000.00. We also started a tradition in December which gets better each year. The Carrollton Santa Tour began in a meager way, transporting Santa on top of Engine 11 to just a hand full of neighborhoods. This event has grown to a full blown two day event which in includes a parade of Fire Vehicles and an elaborate float sporting Santa, all his Elves, a tree and room for the over 500 pounds of food collected each day to help the needy in Isle of Wight County. Santa visits all the major neighborhoods collecting both Christmas wishes as well as food for the needy.
1991 Utilizing Fire Fund money an Eagle Air Compressor and eight 4500 PSI storage bottles were purchased. Four bottles were tied to the compressor for in station use and the other four bottles were placed on a donated C&P Telephone sign trailer to be come our Air Support Unit.
1992 changed the way CVFD fought structure fires. A 1973 Mack 5000 gallon tractor drawn tanker was purchased from Millstone N. J. for $6,000.00. Known as Tanker 16 it was by far the largest Tanker in the area. It had a gasoline powered 500 GPM pump on the trailer. This allowed E-15 to become the first due engine.
1993 was a busy training year as a large number of members completed various modules of the Heavy & Tactical classes offered by DFP. These classes were all taught at CVFD, they included Rope Rescue, Trench Rescue, Confined Space Rescue and Vehicle Rescue. This year also brought changes to fire fighting as the first of our Survive Air Sigma face mount regulator SCBAs were purchased. Also in1993 a new "Pig Shack" was constructed behind the Fire Station. this new building would not only allow area to cook more pigs, but also included a large kitchen that could be utilized in assisting the BBQ as well.


    Carrollton Volunteer Fire Department
initiates providing
Emergency Medical Services

1994 may have been one of the most pivotal years for CVFD. We obtained our Basic Life Support (BLS) Non Transport EMS License. This began a whole new phase of operations for CVFD. We never looked back, as we are still the pioneers in Fire supported EMS in Isle of Wight County. Engine 15 was used as our first response vehicle.
 
1995 We continued to advance well into the EMS provider world with purchase of an ex Virginia Beach Police car. The 1989 Chevrolet Caprice purchased for $1,000.00 became our first Zone vehicle. This vehicle was primarily used to transport members to the Rescue Squad to bring a Medic to Carrollton to assist on our EMS calls. We also completely outfitted Engine 12 with Hurst Equipment. This included all of the extrication equipment that is currently on Engine 10. Engine 15 also received a pump and combo tool. This equipment is now on Quint 10.
 
1997 brought a huge addition to CVFD. Our 1997 E-One 75' Quint was purchased from Fire X replacing both Engine 11 & 12. This $380,000.00 truck definitely took Carrollton Volunteer Fire Department to new heights. 5" hose was also purchased to be placed both on the Quint and the Grumman Engine. We also once again re-designated the numbering system of our vehicles. The Quint was designated Quint 10, Engine 15 became Engine 10, Tanker 16 became Tanker 10 and Brush 14 became Brush 10. The Zone vehicle was designated Zone 10.
 
1998 CVFD became an Advance Life Support (ALS) Non Transport EMS agency with the purchase of three used Marquette Monitor Defibrillators and other necessary EMS Equipment. The Engine and Quint were our ALS licensed vehicles.
 
1999 In a joint effort between CVFD, the Smithfield Volunteer Fire Department the Isle of Wight Volunteer Rescue and Isle of Wight County, part time employees were introduced in our Fire and Rescue organization. Originally CVFD utilized one person ten hours a day Monday thru Friday. Due to the new Fire Station and phenomenal increase in membership over the past few years, we have drastically cut back the use of part time people at CVFD.  
2000 was another big vehicle year. The Mack Tanker was replaced with a 2000 Freightliner 5500 gallon Tanker. The cost of this vehicle was drastically reduced as it was designed and partially constructed by the membership. The total price of the Tanker was $165,000.00. The Tractor was purchased new form Truck Center of Tidewater. The trailer was purchased used from Pine State Creameries and transformed into a Fire Tanker at Emergencies Outfitters of Windsor. We also purchased a 1995 Suburban for $20,000.00. This replaced the the 1989 Caprice. We also purchased an ex York County Fire Admin vehicle. The 1991 Chevrolet Caprice was purchased for $1,500.00 and became Car 10, our Chief's vehicle.
 
2002 began the long awaited Fire Station upgrade. The final stages of planning began on this 1.2 million dollar project that took over two years to complete. This project expanded the Fire Station to over 10,000 square feet with many modern conveniences required to operate a Fire & Rescue Department in the twenty first century. On the EMS side due to a major private donation in the memory of the late James E, Turner by Mr. Turner's son Jim Turner, two Life Pack 12 Monitor Defibrillators were purchased. Both units are completely equipped with all available options including 12 leed and capnography. One unit was placed on Engine 10, the other set aside for our new ambulance.
 
2003 In what was as major a step as getting into EMS, the purchase of our 2003 Freightliner Wheeled Coach Medic unit completed the EMS dream started by Chief Joel Acree in 1992 when the first EMT class was held at CVFD. This truck was purchased directly from Wheeled Coach for $123,000.00. Squad 10 as it is designated is highly regarded among Ambulances. Since it has entered the department it has logged over 130,000 miles and has transported almost 2,750 people to the hospital.
Though we have been serving our community for 50 years, the Carrollton Volunteer Fire Department has and will always strive to professionally and proudly serve the people of Carrollton and surrounding communities. Our community, neighboring communities, and those passing through have come to rely on this truly dedicated and loyal group of men and women.

 

 

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