Diamondhead fire station converts a home to a station

DIAMONDHEAD, MS (WLOX) - By Al Showers – bio | email

DIAMONDHEAD, MS (WLOX) - It's not exactly the place you'd expect to find a fire station, but Diamondhead leaders say it works.

Pat DeStefano is the chairman of the Board of Commissioners for the Diamondhead Fire Protection District.

"I want to give credit to Jerry. he came up with this idea which I think is pretty novel," DeStefano said. "I don't know of any other fire department which has done this."

What they did is convert a three bedroom home into a fire-house.

Diamondhead Fire Department Chief Jerry Dubuisson said, "We added a garage. Then had to beef up our driveways of course, and it blends into the neighborhood. We're trying to be, not only the good neighbors that the fire department is, we're trying to fit in with the community rather than having some big metal building stuck up in the middle of Diamondhead."

It's no secret Diamondhead is growing. There's even a move to incorporate the community. The population has jumped from about 6,000 to more than 9,000 in the past seven years.

DeStefano said, "We were delinquent in our response time in this area of Diamondhead. And we were instructed we needed to do something about it. Otherwise, we would loose our rating."

Right now fire protection in Diamondhead has a six rating.

"Doesn't mean a heck of a lot to you unless you have a fire or an emergency, or you have home owner's insurance. That six fire rating saves you more money than you'll pay for this fire department to protect you," DeStefano said.

The dedication ceremony for the new fire station is actually two fold. It's the 36-year anniversary of the formation of the Diamondhead Fire Protection District.

"So we kind of got two eggs in the same basket here," Dubuisson said.

Fire district leaders estimate they saved the community more than a half million dollars by converting a house verses building a new station from the ground up.

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