At the Oct. 9 Kingwood Service Association (KSA) Public Safety Committee meeting, Houston Fire Department (HFD) District Chief Kelly Ford announced the arrival of a brand new fire engine. It replaces the worn-out ladder truck at Kingwood’s Fire Station No. 101 located at 1863 Kingwood Drive.
“We are getting a new ladder or ‘quint’ for Station 101. A quint is a ladder truck that has a pump and a water tank so it can act like an engine or a ladder truck,” Ford said.
It is called a quint because it includes a total of five pieces of equipment: a pump, water tank, fire hose, aerial device and ground ladders. Ford noted this particular quint is about 105 feet long. Training of the firemen who operate it was completed Oct. 10 and it was placed in service that evening.
Ford also recapped fire department activity for the month of September. He said, “During the last month we had a house fire right around the corner from here (the S. Woodland Hills Community Room) where the gentleman was removed from the home with smoke inhalation and he did survive. That was the most notable event besides the flood.”
Ford explained that during the Imelda flood event, HFD activated its Deployable Operations Group headed by District Chief Charlie Martin, who normally attends this KSA public safety meeting. The group was sent out to Kingwood in the early hours of the morning of the storm and set up its command center at Fire Station No. 102 on West Lake Houston Parkway.
“We had all our vehicles deployed and we had five dump trucks placed throughout all our stations in the Kingwood area. I can’t give you the number of calls received but it was a lot,” Ford said.
Houston Police Department (HPD) Officer Daniel Von Quintus reported that Kingwood participation in National Night Out on Oct. 1 was a big success. The annual community-building campaign promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie. He said, “We had about 20 or so events throughout Kingwood and we tried to have officers get by all of them. It was a very big night. Even at places having it for the first time, it had really big turnouts.”
HPD’s Kingwood Commander Rose Terry announced she is planning to retire next year, probably in January. She said, “A few months ago I was thinking … I have 34 years now and when was I going to say, 'Rose, the time has come?'” She paused and then said, “And it just hit me that next year I am going to be retiring.”
Terry said she has informed the staff at the Kingwood station and has confirmed the decision with the command staff at HPD. Terry emphasized she will continue to work as hard as ever until the yet-to-be-determined retirement date arrives and will be as available to talk just as she has always been in the past. She told the committee she emphasized to her superiors that whoever is assigned to Kingwood must be a hard-working commander. Committee Chairman Marshall Settegast of Mills Branch, on behalf of the committee, thanked Terry for her 34 years of service in the HPD and especially the last two in Kingwood.
Settegast introduced Commander James Hall of the Humble ISD Police Department and welcomed his representation from the district. Hall said, “It’s been a long time since we have been here. Hopefully we will be here a lot more often to get more involved with you in our department and to ensure our kids stay safe going to and from school.”
Settegast thanked him and emphasized the importance of all of the groups in the community, HPD, Humble ISD, HFD and KSA working together to keep each other informed and updated about what is happening in the school district, especially with the threats and events that have occurred in the recent past.
In other business the committee approved spending up to $4,000, as it has in the past, to provide meals to the first responders on duty in the Kingwood area on Thanksgiving and Christmas. Those first responders include the HPD Kingwood Station, the Humble Constable’s Office, the HFD stations in Kingwood and Forest Cove, and the Atascocita Fire Department that serves areas just south of the San Jacinto River.
The next KSA Public Safety Committee Meeting will be Wednesday, Nov. 13, at 7 p.m. in the South Woodland Hills Community Room, 2038 Shadow Rock Drive. The public is invited to attend.