Residents in Rock Island are getting closer to having a new fire station.

The station will replace the existing station in Rock Island, which is small and has aged out of its ability accommodate modern fire apparatus.

Chelan 1/Douglas 2 Fire Chief, Brian Brett, says before the new station can officially become operational, more firefighters will be needed to staff it.

“We just hired a new firefighter on September 15th. We need to hire one more before the end of the year. We have slots reserved at the Washington State Fire Training Academy for our new hires, and once we make that selection and send them through the state academy, we’ll be ready to open the Rock Island fire station.”

Brett says the new station will be a critical component of the new Wenatchee Valley Fire Department’s ability to quickly respond to fires, car accidents, and other emergencies.

“Operationally, once we staff the Rock Island fire station, in the majority of both respective fire districts we will be able to collapse upon an incident within four to six minutes – and often times even faster.”

Construction on the new station, which is located at the corner of Rock Island Avenue and Douglas Street, is expected to be complete by the end of the year.

Brett hopes the station will be fully staffed and ready to respond to incidents by next spring.

The current fire station, which is located at 301 Rock Island Drive, will not be repurposed by the fire department and Brett says they are currently in talks with the City of Rock Island about its future.

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