Frequently Asked Questions
About the North Spartanburg Fire and Emergency Services District
NSFD provides fire suppression, fire and life safety code enforcement, public life safety education, first response to technical rescue, hazardous materials mitigation, and first response to medical emergency services. Additionally, we provide and install smoke alarms, and inspect child car safety seats installations in your vehicle.
NSFD members are trained to National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) professional qualifications to the Firefighter II level and Hazardous Material Technician level. Most members are National Registry Basic Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT), with several members certified as Advanced EMTs and others as Paramedics. Vehicle driver/operators complete emergency vehicle driver’s training and specialty training pertaining to the breed of the vehicle (pumper or aerial apparatus). Officers are trained to the NFPA Fire Officer I level. Officers are also Blue Card Incident Command certified.
Please see our Fire Stations page for a map of the station locations.
The North Spartanburg Fire District is a combination department. We currently have 29 fulltime employees (24 shift and 5 day workers), 20 part time employees, and 10 volunteers.
To be a fulltime firefighter NSFD requires a minimum of NFPA FF2 and SC EMT Basic. To be a volunteer we only require the desire to learn and help their community.
The initial training for recruit firefighters is a physically demanding 320 hours of classroom, skills, and proficiency testing in subjects including: fire suppression, ground ladders, search and rescue, rope work, preventive maintenance, public education, code enforcement, hazardous materials, incident command, utility emergencies, self-rescue, rapid intervention, and First Aid/CPR. There two paths a member can take to obtain their training. One option is to enroll in a Firefighter Rookie School conducted in Spartanburg County. The daytime class last eight weeks Monday through Friday 8 to 5, while the night time class meets two nights a week for five months. The other option is to take each class individually through the South Carolina Fire Academy and Regional course offerings (approx. 2 year process).
Outside of responding to emergencies, firefighters have a healthy dose of ancillary duties that have to be completed routinely. All apparatus is inspected daily for mechanical and electrical issues. All the equipment is inspected, operated, and re-stowed for service. Each unit has a specific day when the unit is taken out of service and gone through bumper to bumper once a month. Each weekday, firefighters are required to participate in shift training including medical in-service, hazardous materials, firefighting, and technical rescue. This training typically lasts two to four hours. Firefighters spend the afternoons working on special projects or their areas of responsibility which include: vehicle maintenance, building and grounds, equipment repair, hydrant maintenance, hose repair, IT, and much more. Firefighters also fulfill smoke detector and car seat installations by request. At night, the firefighters conduct physical fitness training, clean the station, and many complete college and fire academy course work.
Fire Reports are available from our administrative office during business hours. Certain restrictions may apply when relating to the release of confidential information.
Our firefighters are trained as Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) or Paramedics. With our stations strategically located within the fire district, we can often arrive prior to the ambulance and begin life saving techniques. It is department policy to send fire department personnel on all life threatening calls; heart attacks, trouble breathing, possible strokes, vehicle accidents, etc. Our members may respond on an engine, squad, aerial ladder, or in car, depending on the type of call. We perform basic and advanced pre-hospital medical treatment, assist the ambulance crew with equipment, patient assessment and transportation.
Our units are dispatched according to information received at the Spartanburg County 9-1-1/Communications Center, and anticipated conditions that firefighters will find on arrival to the emergency. Many times the type of situation found upon arrival is very different from the situation dispatched. A major part of responding to an emergency situation means being prepared to deal with the potential worst case scenario. Discovering that we need more resources upon arrival is often too late. Experience has taught us that it’s better to have too much help than not enough.
Motor vehicle collisions (MVC) present hazards such as potential fire, ruptured fuel tanks, un-deployed airbags and/or the presence of hazardous materials. If any occupants are trapped in the vehicle we will begin the extrication (removal) process. Since all of our firefighters are Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT’s) or Paramedics, we can begin assessing an injured victim’s condition, and assist in providing treatment prior to the arrival of ambulance personnel. Additionally, our fire apparatuses are equipped with vehicle extrication tools.
Our Wingo Park station deploys an aerial ladder truck. This apparatus is equipped with a 105-foot hydraulic operated aerial ladder, a wide variety of ground ladders of various lengths, search and rescue equipment, equipment to control gas and electrical utilities, fire hose, water and a fire pump. The ladder complement cannot be carried on fire department engines due to ladder lengths and number.
Best fire department practice dictates that the fire department possess the ability to ladder the roof of every building within its fire district. The campus of University of South Carolina Upstate has some buildings that require a 100-foot ladder to reach the roof.
Lastly, ISO recommends that communities have an aerial ladder spaced within 2-1/2 radii of one another. The deployment of our aerial ladder truck helps ensures that our fire district’s ISO Public Fire Protection Classification is the best that we can maintain within our operating budget. Our fire district’s ISO Class 2 rating ensures that our residents and business owners pay the lowest fire insurance rates.
NSFD participates in automatic aid agreements with neighboring fire districts and departments. When you call Spartanburg County 9-1-1 the nature of your emergency and location will be entered into a computer in the dispatch center. The dispatch center’s computer will analyze the nature of the emergency and its location, and then determine which fire department resources are closest to the location. The dispatcher will then dispatch the closest, most appropriate units to handle your emergency.
These automatic aid agreements ensure that the closest fire apparatus is sent to your emergency; while shared resources from neighboring fire districts ensure that sufficient apparatus, equipment and personnel are sent to keep you, your property and your firefighters safe.
NSFD is funded by your property taxes. We do not charge any additional fees for our services.
Sometimes several units are dispatched to the same incident. The first unit may have arrived on the scene, surveyed the situation and informed the dispatcher that the situation was under control. All other responding units were cancelled and put back into service, ready to take another call. Most likely, when you see an emergency vehicle go lights and siren through an intersection and then slow down and turn the emergency lights off, they have been cancelled from the call they were going on.
We block traffic lanes for the safety of our personnel and our patients. Blocking extra lanes keep our personnel safe when they go back to our apparatus to get more equipment and help protect the victim we are trying to stabilize. Over 25 firefighters are killed or injured each year while working at incidents on streets and highways. Lastly, Federal law requires that a traffic management zone be established when the normal flow of traffic is disrupted.
Firefighters are very concerned about running over firehoses because the hose can be damaged and any firefighter at the end of a nozzle will have the water interrupted and possibly cause injuries or death. Any hose that is driven over without protection has to be taken out of service and tested.
Fire Prevention, Code Enforcement and Community Outreach
The North Spartanburg Fire District will inspect and install smoke detectors when needed. It is our goal to ensure every home is protected. A note to property owners, It is the owners responsibility to ensure smoke detectors are operational in rental property. If a tenant does not have operating smoke detectors, please contact us.
The North Spartanburg is a Safe Kids site. We inspect and educate parents on proper seat installations. We encourage parents to call our headquarters station to schedule an appointment.
Keeping Your Family Safe
Every home should have a family escape plan. Practice this plan often.
You will need to get out of the house and then call 9-1-1 for the Fire Department from outside of the house or from a neighbor's house. The use of a phone could cause the gas to ignite if you called from inside the house.
Place smoke alarms on the ceiling or high on the wall. Check the manufacturer's instructions for the best place for your alarm.
A closed door may slow the spread of smoke, heat and fire. Put smoke alarms inside and outside each bedroom and sleeping area. Put alarms on every level of the home. Smoke alarms should be interconnected. When one sounds, they all sound.
Smoke alarm powered by a nine-volt battery
Smoke alarm powered by a 10-year lithium (or “long-life”) battery
Smoke alarm that is hardwired into your home's electrical system
NSFD does not fill swimming pools. Water from fire hydrants is owned by each water district. You can obtain information about hydrant meter and using a fire hydrant to fill your swimming pool by contacting your water system.
Yes we are currently on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
NSFD does not assist in rescuing animals. Please contact Spartanburg County Environmental Enforcement at (864) 596-3582 for animal control matters.
We currently do not host birthday parties.
Contact our headquarters station during normal business hours.
The Spartanburg County solid waste stations have areas designated for paint, motor oil, and other household waste products.
7. Does NSFD offer fire extinguisher training?
Yes. Contact our training division.
8. Does NSFD offer citizens’ CPR training?
Yes. Contact our training division.