Va. fire dept. anticipating staffing shortage

A Richmond Fire Department memo said they often do not have enough personnel to meet minimum staffing requirements and that morale is low

By FireRescue1 Staff

RICHMOND, Va. — A fire department is preparing for a staffing shortage due to resignations and retirements, according to a memo.

The Richmond Fire Department memo said the department is often unable to meet the minimum staffing requirements and has to routinely hire seven to 15 people for overtime, WRIC reported.

The memo added that firefighters are leaving due to low pay and low morale, and Chief Melvin Carter said the department also has a problem with firefighters improperly calling out sick.

Chief Carter said the department is $1.2 million over budget due to overtime.

According to the memo, if the department is seven firefighters short, an engine goes out of service, but Chief Carter assured the community that there are enough firefighters to respond to calls, and that they are only making a contingency plan.

Fourteen recruits are expected to graduate on Friday, according to Chief Carter.

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