Louisville fire districts merge to better use resources, improve service

Fire districts in Louisville merge to improve service, better use resources

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Several Louisville fire protection districts joined forces Sunday with the aim of improving response times and becoming more efficient overall.

The St. Matthews Fire Protection District and the Lyndon Fire Protection District merged on Sunday. The Jeffersontown and McMahan Departments also became a single entity. The new entity will be one of the larger EMS and fire services in suburban Louisville, with about 90 full-time employees operating out of four fire stations.

"The blending of the two made a lot of sense for financial reasons and operational reasons," St. Matthews Fire Protection District Chief William Seng said.

July 1 is the official start date of a fire protection merger between the St. Matthews and Lyndon districts, a move those who manage these fire and EMS resources said will help them do their jobs more efficiently.

"It's harder nowadays to find firefighters and medics and techs," Seng said. "So, we're pooling our resources."

The formerly separate units will now work together, develop a combined operation plan, share training and inspection bureaus and save money by purchasing in bulk.

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As for immediate changes, emergency officials said expanded EMS services will be felt in Lyndon in the coming days.

"Lyndon is a very busy area from an EMS standpoint," St. Matthews Assistant Chief Mike Riordan said. "Being able to put more resources out there will help the residents and it'll help the whole system, which is what we're trying to do."

Riordan said Lyndon did not have a combined EMS-fire system before the merger, but, now, ambulances will be placed in Lyndon stations, helping with response times and the overall efficiency of the system throughout the area.

"Louisville Metro EMS does a tremendous job with the resources they have, but they have a huge run volume," Riordan said. "So, anything we can do to help them and help the citizens in our district is really what we're all about here.

The McMahan and Jeffersontown Fire Protection Districts also merged Sunday, but members from the two units celebrated the change Saturday with a merger ceremony.

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