JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- An idea is on the table that would change response to fires in one part of the First Coast.
The proposal has some residents on edge.
Linden Rohrer lives in Avondale, just a few houses down from Fire Station 14.
"They've been real good about responding," Rohrer said.
Rohrer has lived there over ten years, and over the years he's used the Fire and Rescue department several times.
"I put some bacon on and come out to my shop," Rohrer recalled of one instance. "Next thing, they were at the door and they said what's wrong."
But proposed changes to his neighborhood fire station have him worried.
"Not for just me, but for all the rest of the neighborhood," Rohrer said.
Thursday at a Town Hall meeting, Fire Chief Marty Senterfitt outlined the changes: replacing Fire Station 14's fire engine with an Advanced Life Support unit - essentially, an ambulance.
"We're kind of between a rock and a hard place," Senterfitt said. "We need more ambulances but people don't want to give up their fire engines."
But in the midst of city budget crunches, there isn't enough money to have both.
The proposal comes from Senterfitt who says four out of five 911 calls are for a medical emergency.
He added there were only four fires in the last calendar year in the Avondale area.
But some attending the Town Hall say it only takes one time.
Although there are three other fire stations nearby, concerns include units potentially being stuck at train tracks and high volumes of calls at other stations.
Area Councilman Jim Love said it's a good proposal, but not the way to go right now.
"It got a lot of people thinking about what do we really need," Love said. "Things are changing."
Rohrer, once a volunteer firefighter himself for nine years, knows every second matters and agrees there are tough choices ahead.
"I know it's hard for the city or the states to make cuts in their spending but I think they need to come up with something besides fire and police," Rohrer said.
First Coast News