SMFR Drone Used In Mapping Fuel Spill At Palmetto Marina

On Dec. 15th, 2017, Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District’s Special Operations team was requested to assist the North River Fire District with a leaking marine vessel in the 1000 block of Riverside Dr., Palmetto, Florida. SMFR units arrived on scene and consulted with the Incident Commander along with the U.S. Coast Guard and were immediately requested to assist with spill tracking.

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Southern Manatee Fire Rescue Holds 2nd Annual Awards Banquet

On Saturday, December 16, 2017 at 1100 hours, the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District held their annual Awards Ceremony/Banquet. The food was provided by Sonny’s BBQ and once again it was free to us because of FF/EMT Chuck Moonen Haz-mat Chili winning again 1st Place and People Choice Awards for the 2017 Chili Cook-off – Thank you again FF/EMT Chuck Moonen. Southern Manatee Fire Rescue has won “People’s Choice” three (3) years in a row.

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Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District Wins “People’s Choice” Award and “1st Place Award” in the 18th Annual Morton’s Market Firehouse Chili Cook-off

On Sunday, October 8, 2017 the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District competed in the 18th Annual Morton’s Firehouse Chili Cook-off and once again won the “People’s Choice” Award and “1st Place Award”. Firefighter/EMT Chuck Moonen famous “Haz-mat Chili” recipe once again was a BIG hit at Morton’s Market Firehouse Chili Cook-off not only with the judges but also with thousands of citizens that attended 4 hour event.

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Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District Reminds Residents: “Every Second Counts – Plan 2 Ways Out”

This year’s Fire Prevention Week campaign, “Every Second Counts – Plan 2 Ways Out”. In a fire, seconds count. Seconds can mean the difference between residents of our community escaping safely from a fire or having their lives end in tragedy. Learn more about creating a “Home Escape Plan” and many other life-saving tips and experience our Fire Safety House with smoke filled rooms and learn how to escape.

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SMFR Receives Federal Funding

Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District receives federal funding under the (FY) 2016 Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant to hire 9 firefighter/EMTs/Paramedics.

On July 28, 2017, the Department of Homeland Security awarded the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District a SAFER Grant. The awarding of the grant will allow Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District to hire nine (9) new full-time employees (Firefighter/EMT/Paramedic’s – entry level) for our first-out responding fire apparatus. This will allow the District to staff our Hazardous Materials Response vehicle with our currently employed Haz-mat technician firefighters/EMTs/Paramedics. With the SAFER grant, the District will be able to respond its Hazardous Materials Truck to incidents (Fire, EMS and Haz-mat). The addition of the 9 firefighters, 3 Firefighters per shift will increase the effectiveness of the first alarm assignments and other emergencies occurring in the district, out of the district and within our region. Adding an additional apparatus to our response and increasing the amount of personnel on first alarm assignments it will allow our firefighters to enter structure fires in a safer manner and perform lifesaving operations and reduce property damage. This Safer Grant will allow Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District to be in compliance with NFPA 1710.

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Grants for Home Repairs, Rental Assistance, Loans for Small Businesses

As the Suncoast begins to recover from Hurricane Irma, Congressman Vern Buchanan today pointed residents to a number of federal disaster relief programs that can help with the recovery.

"I want to make sure my constituents are aware of the federal resources available to help address any damage Irma left behind," said Buchanan, who monitored the storm from the Manatee County Emergency Operations Center.

The federal disaster declaration issued Sunday for Sarasota, Manatee and Hillsborough Counties unlocked a number of programs to help residents, including grants and loans for home repairs, rental assistance for temporary housing, unemployment payments, loans for small businesses and crisis counseling.

To apply for assistance, individuals and business owners should visit or call 1-800-621-3362.

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A Message to the Community – After Hurricane Irma

Important Information

Trash and Recycle Updates: No collection for recycling or yard waste. Trash will be picked up on normal days. Monday trash day will be picked up Wednesday.

Water Update: Please limit the usage in areas without power as the sewer may backup. The lift stations are down in those areas and will not work properly until power is restored.

Power Update: Crews are working to restore power throughout Manatee County. The Emergency Website for reporting an outage is currently unavailable and FPL has asked citizens without power to call it in. 1-800-468-8243

Manatee County Public Schools: Schools are closed until Monday September 18th.

Manatee County Government Offices: Will reopen September 13th.

Infrastructure Damage & Flooding: Call Public Works at 941-708-7497

Other Issues: Citizens Information Center at 941-749-3547

Fuel Location: go to

For additional information:

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Southern Manatee Fire Rescue Hires Two New Firefighter/EMT’s

On Thursday, July 20, 2017, the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District swears in two new Firefighter/EMT’s at the beginning of their monthly Commission meeting. Month’s back the District had some retirements and began the employment process utilizing candidates obtained through the National Testing Network (NTN).

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Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District 5 Alarm Commercial Fire

On Thursday, May 18, 2017, the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District responded to 1401 44th Avenue East at 1200 hours for a report of a structure fire. Upon leaving the Station Battalion 3 advised ECC that he had a large column of thick black smoke and requested a 2nd alarm to dispatch.
Engine 321 arrived 3 minutes later at 1203 hours and reported a fully involved building with fire spreading to a large pile of tires.

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Southern Manatee Fire Rescue Haz-mat Team Assists North River Fire District

On Thursday, June 1, 2017, the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District Hazardous Materials Team responded to the North River Fire District for a fuel spill in a boat. Accidentally a boat owner pumped over 20 gallons of fuel through a rod holder instead of his fuel tank. This fuel ended up in bottom of this boat in the well and rapidly became an extremely dangerous incident.

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Southern Manatee & EVO Gymnastics

On 4/18, 19 & 20 Southern Manatee Fire Rescue presented certificates of appreciation to EVO gymnastics and several of the gymnast in recognition of their demonstration of acrobatics they practice on a routine basis. This demonstration gives valuable insight to first responders who may be called upon to render care in the event of an injury.

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2017 Strategic Planning Workshop

On Wednesday, April 12, 2017 from 0900 to 1600 hours, the District conducted our annual Strategic Planning Workshop with all of their officers and staff personnel. Each year prior to the starting on the next fiscal year’s budget, all personnel submit their budget request for either new equipment, maintenance & repair of existing equipment, supplies and continuation requests.

At this meeting all of these requests are reviewed and any new equipment or ideas are discussed and voted on to determine if they will be included in the next year’s budget.

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Southern Manatee Fire Rescue Haz-mat Team Receives Unit Citation from the Manatee County Fire Chief’s Association

On Thursday, March 30, 2017 at the Manatee County Fire Chief’s Association meeting issued the “Chief’s Unit Citation Award” to members of the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District Hazardous Materials Team for their professionalism and Team work during a multi-agency response to an overturned gasoline tanker accident on I-75 just north of University Parkway on December 12, 2016.

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Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District Promotional Ceremony

On February 16, 2017 shortly after 1700 hours, the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District conducted a promotional ceremony. Prior to the start of the Fire Commission meeting, Fire Chief Brian Gorski announced the promotions of Lieutenant Mike Bloski to the rank of Captain, Lieutenant Bobby Thayer to the rank of Captain, 1st Class Firefighter/EMT Brian Hodges to Lieutenant and 1st Class Firefighter/EMT Ed Tumolo to the rank of Lieutenant.

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