Welcome to the Goshen Fire Department web site. I hope you find it easy to navigate as well as informative. The web pages will be updated regularly to keep the public, as well as our members, informed of upcoming events. Please come back and visit us again to see what’s new.
The most important function of any Fire Department is prevention. Through education and inspections, we hope to prevent/reduce the occurrence of situations that produce injury, death, and destruction of property or negatively impact our environment.
The S.A.F.E. (Student Awareness of Fire Education) Program in Goshen is now in its 10th year. This program is a cooperative effort between firefighters, school principals, teachers, and students. Our S.A.F.E. Program puts trained firefighter-educators in the classroom to conduct fire safety education programs in grades Pre-K through 6th grade. Our firefighters are in the regional elementary school 5 times during each school year teaching students to recognize the dangers of fire, how to prevent it and how to escape from it. We also teach life safety lessons such as the dangers of using tobacco, holiday safety and winter ice safety. The program was originally developed and funded through a state grant. It has been expanded to include presentations to senior citizens, daycare centers and other civic groups. We hope the program continues to be as successful in the future as it is today.
The Department currently has 16 active firefighters and 2 fire police. These are dedicated individuals who give of their time and talent and ask nothing in return. We meet on a weekly basis and train at least twice a month. See our schedule of events if you would like to know what is going on and would like to join us to see what the Goshen Fire Department is all about.
Goshen is located in the eastern foothills of the Berkshire Hills in Western Massachusetts approximately three hours west of Boston and two hours east of Albany, NY. State Route 9 runs through the town’s center. State Route 112 intersects with Route 9 just west of the town center and runs north. There are 26.7 miles of secondary roads that are steep and winding with little or no lighting. 30% of these roads are unimproved (dirt). Driving conditions are mountainous. At 1,200 feet above sea level, drivers face more challenging winter driving conditions than typically found in the nearby Connecticut River valley.
The town consists of 17.7 square miles of rolling hills, open fields and dense forest with two lakes and many ponds. The GFD protects this rural community of 1,007 full time residents - a 23% increase since the 1990 U.S. census. The census does not reflect the population we truly protect. During the summer, the population substantially increases as seasonal residents return to the 200± seasonal homes situated around the town’s ponds and lakes. The 1,800-acre Daughters of the American Revolution (D.A.R.) State Forest (campgrounds and day activities) and two private youth camps (Camp Howe 4-H and Camp Holy Cross) bring in approximately 83,000 visitors per year. These camps house youths and counselors in wooden cabins in a thickly forested setting accessed by dirt roads.
Goshen has seen a building boom in recent years. Many of these new structures were prefabricated houses. The size of these new homes has been growing too with the average square footage exceeding that of older Goshen homes. They are typically set back off the road and are accessed by long gravel driveways making water shuttling operations more challenging.
“The Goshen Fire Department is committed to protecting the people, property, and environment within our community. We will be responsive to the needs of our citizens and visitors by providing rapid, professional, humanitarian services essential to the health, safety, and well-being of the community. We will accomplish our mission through fire prevention, fire safety awareness education, fire suppression, emergency medical services, and other related emergency and non-emergency activities. We will actively participate in our community, serve as role models, and strive to effectively and efficiently utilize all of the necessary resources at our command.”
Chief Sue Labrie and Chief Francis Dresser
Thomas Barrus - Goshen's first fire chief