The turn of the century proved to be an exciting and dynamic time for the Freetown Fire Department. Station 3 opened on January 1, 2000. In addition to the new station three more firefighters were hired bringing the total staffing to the current level of eight firefighters and the Chief. This new station was staffed with two Firefighter/ EMT’s twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. The 1986 Ford 1250 GPM Pumper, 1994 Ford Ambulance and the 1969 International Brush Breaker were relocated to this station. The department received a grant from the Office of Public Safety which was used to purchase protective clothing and a Thermal Imaging Camera.
In 2001 a new Ford Class 1 Ambulance was placed in-service at Station 3. The 1994 Ford was relocated to Station 2 and the 1986 Ford was disposed of.
September 11, 2001 was a day no one will ever forget. Terrorist attacked the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. The Firefighters Association and Union joined forces to raise money for the widows and children of the members of the FDNY who were killed on that unforgettable day.
On January 16, 2002 a house fire on Forge Road in Assonet leaves one dead. The victim, a 44 y/o male was rescued by firefighters but was later pronounced dead on arrival at Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River. In 2002, the 1959 Maxim Ladder was replaced with a 1955 Maxim 75’ Ladder that had been re-powered with a diesel motor and updated drive train. The 59 Maxim Truck was placed in reserve at station 2.
On February 20, 2003 the furthest response in the history of the Freetown Fire Department notably occurred with the dispatch of the ambulance to the City of West Warwick, RI. This response was to the “Station Nightclub” Fire in which 100 people were killed.
In 2003, a newer Ladder Truck was placed in service at Station 2. This unit was a 1978 Ward Lafrance 100ft rear mount Aerial Ladder donated from Dartmouth Fire District 3. The 1955 Maxim Ladder and the reserve 1959 Maxim Ladder were donated to the Town of Rochester.
In 2004, the department received a large Federal Fire Act Grant and used the money to replace all of the existing Self Contained Breathing Apparatus.
In 2007, took delivery of a 2006 Class 1 Type 3 Ford Ambulance. This unit, a Horton demonstrator was purchased by the Town and placed in service at Station 3 in April. The 2001 Ford Ambulance was relocated to Station 2 and the 1994 Ford was disposed of.
In 2009, the department received a Federal Fire Act Grant to purchase two new Jaws of Life, replacing the original unitsdating back to the 1970s. The department also received a Volunteer Fire Assistance Grant to equip every firefighteron the department with a portable radio.
In 2010, a 1993 Ford F-350 pickup truck was placed in service at Station 1. This vehicle wasacquired through military surplus and replaced the 1983 GMC pumper that was taken out of service due to mechanical problems. Also in 2010, the fire department was faced with a crisis of epic proportion whensevere flooding impacted the area from March 30 - April 6. The flood waters damaged numerous homes and businesses. Additionally, many roads and bridges were damaged and rendered unusable. Fortunately, there was no loss of life in Freetownas a result of the flooding.
In 2012, a new Ford F-450 ambulance was placed in service at Station 3. The 2006 Ford wasmoved to Station 2 and the 2001 Ford was traded in. Also in 2012, the department received anotherFederal Assistance to Firefighters Grant to purchase a new forestry this vehicle. This unit, a 2012 Ford, was placedin service at Station 1, replacing the 1993 Ford pickup and the 1967 Jeep brush breaker.
In 2013, a new KME pumper was placed in service at Station 3. The 1986 Ford pumper was re-assigned toStation 2 and the 1973 Maxim foam pumper was retired.
The challenges facing the fire department as we head into the 21st century are many but the capacity of the fire department to adjust and overcome them is unlimited. The Freetown Fire Department currently operates out of three fire stations. These stations house four engine, one ladder, one squad, two brush breakers, two ambulances and assorted other equipment.