Companies and Apparatus
The Albany Fire Department is comprised of:
- 2 Battalions
- 8 Engine Companies
- 4 Ladder Companies
- 3 Paramedic Companies
- 1 Heavy Rescue
Engines and Ladders are typically staffed with an Officer and 3 firefighters, Paramedic Companies are staffed with a Paramedic Officer and a Paramedic Firefighter. The Heavy Rescue is typically staffed with an Officer and 5 firefighters.
Battalion Chiefs are in charge of the day to day operations of all Companies throughout the City of Albany. They work 24 hour shifts and command the on duty companies throughout the duration of the shift.
There are 8 Engine Companies in the City of Albany. The primary function of the Engine Company is to suppress and extinguish fires by securing a water source (hydrant), locating the fire and using the appropriate hoses and equipment to extinguish the fire. Engines carry a wide variety of different size hoses. 5 inch diameter hose is used to supply water from a hydrant to the engine or from one engine to another. 2 1/2 inch hose line is used to attack a large fire or a fire in a large open commercial structure. 1 3/4 inch hose line is used to attack a fire in most single-family buildings.
Emergency Medical Service
All Engine Companies, with the exception of Engine 10, primarily handle Basic Life Support calls (BLS). They carry automatic cardiac defibrillators, oxygen, suction units, and all the related emergency medical services (EMS) Basic Life Support equipment to ensure proper patient care.
Engine Company 10 primarily handles Advanced Life Support (ALS) calls. For this reason this Engine Company is referred to as "Paramedic Engine 10."
There are 4 Ladder companies in the City of Albany. Ladder Company Firefighters are deployed to fires and other emergencies that require the ability to access the upper floors or roof of a structure. Ladder Companies have several functions and are equipped with either a truck-mounted ladder or a tower ladder. Ladder companies also are responsible for forcible entry into secure buildings as well as searching for trapped victims. They ventilate fire buildings through the windows and through the roof to let heat and toxic smoke escape.
City of Albany Ladder Companies are equipped with a 100 foot aerial ladder device. In addition, each Ladder Company carries a full complement of ground ladders.
These Ladder Companies also carry devices for:
- Extrication equipment
- Elevated hose streams
- Forcible entry
- Overhaul and salvage
Emergency Medical Service
All Ladder Companies primarily handle Basic Life Support calls (BLS). They carry automatic cardiac defibrillators, oxygen, suction units, and all the related emergency medical services (EMS) basic life support equipment to ensure proper patient care.
The Paramedic Companies are staffed by Firefighter/Paramedics, and have a primary duty to treat injured occupants or provide advanced life support when they are on emergency medical (EMS) calls.
At a fire scene, if not treating a patient, they will assist the Engine or Ladder Companies in their operations.
Paramedic Companies, Rescue 1, Rescue 2, Rescue 9 are also referred to as "Rescue" Companies. The primary function of the three Rescue Companies is the delivery of advanced life support during medical emergencies.
Each of these Paramedic Companies carries defibrillators, life saving medications, and an assortment of medical supplies . This equipment is the same that is found in any well-stocked hospital emergency room.
Albany Fire Department paramedics are certified to:
- Initiate IVs
- Administer life saving medications
- Identify and treat cardiac arrhythmias
- Perform Advanced Airway Modalities
The Heavy Rescue is the Company that is responsible for the search and rescue of any trapped victims in a hazardous situation. The Heavy Rescue is also responsible for securing building utilities, salvage work, and restoring sprinkler systems to working order. The Heavy Rescue also operates as the City of Albany's Hazardous Materials Unit. The Heavy Rescue Company carries a wide assortment of tools and equipment including:
- Rescue Air Bags
- Ventilation equipment
- Forcible entry tools
- Hazardous Materials equipment
- Hydraulic Rescue Tools
- Salvage covers
The Heavy Rescue responds to:
- Reported structure fires
- EMS incidents
- Vehicle extrications
- Hazardous Materials incidents
- Elevator emergencies
- Flooding conditions
- Gas emergencies
- Technical rescue (high angle, low angle, rigging)
Emergency Medical Service
The Heavy Rescue primarily handles BLS calls but is equipped with ALS equipment. They carry a cardiac defibrillator, oxygen, suction units and all the related EMS Basic Life Support equipment to ensure proper patient care.
Marine 1 is a custom built heavy duty vessel manufactured by Lake Assault Boats. It is 36 feet long and 10.5 feet wide. It is propelled by two 300 horsepower outboard motors. Marine 1 is capable of day or night operations in any weather condition. It is equipped with precision GPS mapping, high resolution radar, an advanced thermal imaging camera system sonar. It has a landing craft style bow which drops down for transfer of patients or equipment.
Marine 1's on-board fire pump can flow over 1500 gallons of water per minute through a roof mounted master stream as well as hand lines.
In addition to water rescue and firefighting operations, Marine 1 can assist the Albany Port Authority and the U.S. Coast Guard with hazard mitigation operations such as deploying an absorbent boom system around a hazardous material spill.
Hazardous Materials Unit
The Albany Fire Department's Hazardous Materials Unit is equipped to investigate and mitigate any potentially harmful material release in the City of Albany and in Albany County. This unit is manned by members of the Rescue Squad with support of other fire suppression/EMS units.
The Albany Fire Department operates an attack foam/resupply trailer donated to the Department by Global Partners. The Global Oil Terminal at the Port of Albany stores up to 25 million gallons of liquid hydrocarbons.
Albany Fire Department's Foam Trailer is prepared to respond to spills and fires inside and outside the Global Terminal. The trailer is also available for disasters outside of the City of Albany.
The Albany Fire Department also operates a second foam trailer as part of the New York State Foam Response Task Force.