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On Monday, October 25th, members from Local 1803 visited the offices of Breast Cancer Support Services of Berks. Local 1803 raised money this year through the sale of Breast Cancer Awareness T-Shirts....
Friday, October 22nd, 2021
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Please consider purchasing 2021 Reading Fire Department Toy Drive apparel to help us get toys for local kids in need this Christmas. We appreciate you helping us in this great cause! Link posted below...
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Hired on February 1st of 1995, Judd Weber began his firefighting career on the C-Platoon where he was assigned as a jumper after graduating the fire academy. Firefighter Weber remained a jumper on C-s...
Friday, July 23rd, 2021
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Congratulations to the 2021 recruit class on their graduation of the fire academy. The recruit class has finished 6 months of strenuous training led by Lieutenant Batz and now will be assigned to stre...
News
2 ENGINE COMPANIES DISBANDED
Thursday, March 31st, 2011

As a result of ACT 47 & the recent arbitration award between the City & the Reading Fire Fighters Local 1803, firefighter staffing will be reduced by 4 firefighters per shift. To facilitate the loss of manpower, 2 engine companies have been slated for closure. The firefighters union remains concerned about the loss of manpower to an already understaffed fire department, but understands the seriousness of the city's fiscal situation.

The resulting loss will reduce coverage in the 18th Ward with 14's district being split between Engines 5 & 3. Engine 1's district will grow larger covering not only the vast downtown, but the south east as well. Both engine companies had mutual aid assignments with Engine 13 running into Mount Penn Borough, and Engine 14 running into Kenhorst Borough.

Engines 13 & 14 will cease to exist as of 800 hours, April 1st.

Firefighters from those companies will be moved to fill vacancies on other apparatus, as well as jumper positions on their respective platoons.

Engine 13, which was the apparatus of the former Union Fire Company, can be traced back to 1898 when the citizens of East Reading formed the company to provide for fire protection. The company was quartered in East Reading on 15th street in June of 1905. "13" ran from the area until 1992, when the city closed the building due to its poor condition.

The engine was then moved into Ladder 2's quarters at 1019 Spruce street where the company continued to provide service to the citizens of East Reading. In 2004, the city closed the former Washington Fire Company building on Spruce street and forced the company to relocate to Engine 1's quarters at 8th & Court streets. In the beginning of 2011, after years of poor roof conditions at the 8th & Court building, a serious mold issue forced both companies out of the station. This move sent Engine 13 to the Plum & Franklin street station, the furthest from their original 15th street home.

Engine Company 13 served for 113 years.
Engine 13 Apparatus Gallery

Engine 14, which was the former apparatus of the Oakbrook Fire Company had the distinction of being the youngest company in the department. The company's first rig can be traced back to 1903. The company was quartered in a very small station at 619 Park Ave. The company served residents in the city's 18th ward from this location until October of 2010 with the opening of the new Southwest Fire Station on Lancaster Ave.

Engine Company 14 served for 108 years.
Engine 14 Apparatus Gallery


WFMZ 69 News Story

2 ENGINE COMPANIES DISBANDED
2 ENGINE COMPANIES DISBANDED
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On Monday, October 25th, members from Local 1803 visited the offices of Breast Cancer Support Services of Berks. Local 1803 raised money this year through the sale of Breast Cancer Awareness T-Shirts. The Local was able to raise $1352.40 which will be used by BCSSB to make care bags and fund other f...
Friday, October 22nd, 2021
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Please consider purchasing 2021 Reading Fire Department Toy Drive apparel to help us get toys for local kids in need this Christmas. We appreciate you helping us in this great cause! Link posted below..https://stores.weikelsportswear.com/reading_fire_toy_drive_2021
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Hired on February 1st of 1995, Judd Weber began his firefighting career on the C-Platoon where he was assigned as a jumper after graduating the fire academy. Firefighter Weber remained a jumper on C-shift for 9 years until he was awarded the bid as Engine 3 crewman on C-shift.
Friday, July 23rd, 2021
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Congratulations to the 2021 recruit class on their graduation of the fire academy. The recruit class has finished 6 months of strenuous training led by Lieutenant Batz and now will be assigned to street rotation for 3 months.
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Congratulations to Firefighter Donny Marks on his retirement after 36 years of service to the City of Reading. Donny started as a volunteer firefighter in Reading on March 3rd of 1985, and was hired by the city on April 18th, 1994.
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Congratulations to FF/EMT Brad Shanaman for being crowned ShredFest Champion 2021. Brad lost 28.2 pounds/10.2% of his starting body over the course of 60 days. Our Local 1803 Health and Wellness Committee holds this annual weight loss competition to encourage our firefighters and officers to stay in...
Thursday, April 22nd, 2021
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When our well used GMI (gas measurement instrument) started to give us problems, we reached out to UGI to learn about purchasing a new one through them. UGI bought a brand new one and then generously donated it to us.
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It is with great sadness and regret we report the passing of Firefighter Mark "Dewey" Kulp. Dewey was hospitalized after contracting Covid-19 on the job, and after multiple days in the hospital he succumbed to complications from the disease.
Sunday, December 20th, 2020
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Our condolences to the family of Retired Firefighter Paul "Gumshoe" LerchFirefighter Lerch was hired in October of 1967 as a driver for the Hampden Fire Company. Lerch, who gained the nickname "Gumshoe" or "Shoes", would eventually be assigned to work on Ambulance 96 in...
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Reading Firefighters once again came to help our neighbors during our annual charity toy-drive campaign. With the pandemic of 2020 causing great difficulties for families across the country, many aspects of life have been disrupted.
Tuesday, December 1st, 2020
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ORDER#NameCurrent PositionNew PositionEffective Date2020-41Michael SninskyMedic 4 "A" PlatoonActing EMS Deputy Chief11.23.20202020-42Jason Batz Ladder 3 Tiller "D" PlatoonTraining Lieutenant12.1.2020
Friday, November 27th, 2020
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Congratulations to Firefighter Jason "Spike" Batz on his promotion to Training LieutenantJason was hired by the city on June 18th of 2001. After completing fire training, Batz was assigned as a jumper firefighter on the B platoon.
Monday, November 23rd, 2020
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Congratulations to Paramedic Michael Sninsky on his promotion to Deputy Chief of Emergency Medical Services. Mike was hired in February of 2006 and assigned to Medic 2 on the B platoon. Sninsky would spend seven years on Medic 2 before transferring to Medic 1 in 2013.
Wednesday, November 11th, 2020
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Firefighters recently delivered 285 lbs of food to the Helping Harvest Food Bank of Berks County. Helping Harvest works to feed the hungry by acquiring and distributing food to people in need. Helping Harvest collects, purchases, stores, and distributes over seven million pounds of food annually to ...
Tuesday, November 3rd, 2020
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ORDER#NameCurrent PositionNew PositionEffective Date2020-36Wade VanbuskirkJumper "B" PlatoonEngine 3 Driver "B" Platoon10.13.20202020-38Corbin KeiserJumper "C" PlatoonLadder 3 Driver "C" Platoon10.19.20202020-40Lt.
Sunday, November 1st, 2020
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Congratulations to Lieutenant Stuart Bansner on his promotion to 1st Deputy Chief on the "D" Platoon. Chief Bansner was hired on February 1st of 1995. After completing the fire academy, he was assigned to the "A" platoon as a jumper firefighter.
Wednesday, October 28th, 2020
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It is with great sadness and regret we report the passing of Firefighter James "Corky" Lerch Jr. Corky lost a battle with cancer only after a few short months surrounded by his family and friends.
Tuesday, October 27th, 2020
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On the evening of October 27th, the A platoon was treated to a home-cooked dinner in appreciation for the services we provide. The dinner was prepared by Ken and Ruth Biles along with their daughter Kimberly Bolles.
Monday, October 26th, 2020
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Deputy Chiefs James Stoudt and Thomas Rehr recently traveled to Hamburg New York to inspect two Emergency One Typhoon Pumpers. The new apparatus features a 1500 GPM pump, 500-gallon water tank, shortened wheelbase, and lowered hose bed.
Sunday, October 25th, 2020
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Please keep Firefighter James Lerch Jr. and his family in your thoughts and prayers as he battles a serious illness. We wish him a speedy recovery!

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