Racine Fire Bells/Firehouse 3 Museum

RFBC News and Upcoming Events

  • Racine Fire Bells Membership Meeting in October and November at Firehouse 3 Museum at 9 am.
  • December 11, 2005 - Annual Fire Bells/Racine County Fire Chiefs and the Racine County Arson Task Force Joint Christmas Party - Firefighter/EMT of the Year Awards
All monthly Fire Bell meetings held the second Saturday of each month at Firehouse 3 Museum, 700 Sixth Street in Racine at 0900 hours unless otherwise indicated. All Rehab Meetings held at Red Cross - 4521 Taylor Avenue - Lower Level starting at 0900 hours unless otherwise indicated. 

Fire Bells Rehab Response Figures for January to September 2005 Released

The Racine Fire Bells released their response figures for the first nine months of 2005.  Here is the breakdown:

37 total responses to Racine County

25 total responses to Kenosha County

5 total responses to Walworth County

1 response - Mutual Aid to Milwaukee County

The Fire Bells have put in over 200 hours of volunteer time at various fires and other emergencies since January 1st.   During the same period of time they have served 80 gallons of coffee, 10 gallons of Cocoa, 1775 bottles of Gatorade, 1637 bottles of Water, 23 gallons of powdered Gatorade, and 70 cases of Pound Cake, Carrot Cake, Banana Cake, and Chocolate Cake.  Sixty three of the responses were with Rehab 64 or Rehab 65, while 5 responses were carried out with Fire Bells first responder vehicles.   At this rate the Fire Bells have surpassed their previous all time high of 65 runs in 2003 and are heading for a record year of responses.   Thanks to all fire departments in Racine, Kenosha, and Walworth Counties for allowing us to support your emergency operations.  

Racine County Fire Chiefs, Racine County Arson Task Force, and the Racine Fire Bells Joint Christmas Party on December 11th.

Jointly are sponsoring this years Christmas Party on December 11th, 2005 at the Cotton Exchange in Waterford.  The restaurant is located at Highway 20 and 83.  Social Hour at 6 pm with Dinner at 7 pm followed by a program.  The menu for the evening is Tenderloin Tips with Mushrooms in Red Wine Sauce, and Sliced Baked Ham with a Mandarin Orange Sauce.  Choice of potatoes, salads, and veggies.   Cost is $25/person.   For reservations contact Barb Davis (262) 886-1036 or email Barb Davis using this link  Deadline is December 1st.

Fire Bells move
Rehab Unit to Lake Geneva

In a bold and significant move for the Fire Bells we have joined forces with the Ladies Auxiliary of the Lake Geneva Fire Department along with the Town of Burlington Fire Department to provide Rehab Support for Eastern Walworth and Western Racine/Kenosha Counties. Fire Bells President Tim Stein indicated this is a wonderful opportunity to work together with folks who share in our love of supporting the Fire Service through Rehab. By having a Rehab Unit in Lake Geneva we are looking to cut our response times down for the Lake Geneva area. Rehab Unit 64 was moved on May 28th to Lake Geneva and we anticipate going on line June 11th. A great big THANK YOU to the Lake Geneva Fire Department and the Auxiliary Members from Lake Geneva and the Town of Burlington in making this project a success.

Fire Bells participate in
Kenosha County Haz Mat Drill
on May 25th.

The Racine Fire Bells participated in the recent Haz Mat Drill at the University of Wisconsin - Parkside. The drill conducted by Kenosha County Emergency Government involved a simulated weapons of mass destruction explosion with about 75 victims. Many area Rescue Squads participated including some from Lake County IL. In addition to the Kenosha Fire Department, the following agencies also had units on scene - Somers Fire and Rescue, Kenosha FD HM Team, Pleasant Prairie Fire and Rescue, Bristol Fire and Rescue, Wilmot Fire, Racine Fire, SE Wisconsin Regional HM Team, Kenosha Sheriff Bomb Squad, and many others. The six hour drill was interesting and a learning experience for all. The Fire Bells provided Rehab for about 150 participants.

Fire Bells add Rack Chargers
and Spare Batteries for
Motorola and Kenwood Radios.

The Racine Fire Bells in cooperation with Racine County Emergency Government has added four rack chargers and 24 spare batteries for both the Motorola HT 1250 radios, and the Motorola MT 2000 radios. Each Rehab Unit has a set of rack chargers capable of charging either the HT1250 or the MT2000 batteries in less than one hour. In addition both Rehab Units carry six each of the different battery types for a quick change out if necessary. This is available to all Fire and Law Enforcement departments in the county. Recently working with Kenosha County Emergency Government we have obtained Rack Chargers for Kenwood Radios which are in common use throughout Kenosha County. Both Rehab Units now have the ability to charge Motorola and Kenwood Batteries at the scene of an emergency when required..

Racine Fire Bells top 65 Rehab Calls for 2003

The Racine Fire Bells had an extraordinary year in that we responded to 70 calls for Rehab during 2003. In some instances both Rehab Car 64 (the BIG truck), and Rehab Car 65 (the little one) were both on the road at the same time at separate incidents. Check out our run page for the wide variety of calls we respond to on an annual basis.

Racine Fire Bells Responded to
55 Rehab Calls in 2002

As of December 31st, 2002 the Racine Fire Bells have responded to 55 Rehab Calls in Southeast Wisconsin. The calls are pretty much evenly split between Racine and Kenosha Counties, with one to Waukesha County last spring. For 2003 so far the Fire Bells have responded to 20 calls in Racine and Kenosha Counties. The Fire Bells remain committed to supporting all fire departments throughout our area. Thanks for the opportunity to serve you all!

Racine Fire Bells Add
Cross Band Repeater to Rehab Unit

The Racine Fire Bells recently added a cross band repeater to the Rehab Unit allowing VHF radios to talk with UHF radios. The unit was recently used at the Somers Fire on Sheridan Road. Radios were set up so that MABAS Fireground could talk with Racine County Fireground 10. The unit worked perfectly allowing VHF Kenosha County fire units to talk directly with UHF Mt Pleasant and Sturtevant FD units. If there is ever a need for interagency communications between VHF and UHF units remember to call the Fire Bells early on in your incident.

The Racine Fire Bells are still looking for a few good Radios...

The Racine Fire Bells are looking to equip additional members of the group with portable or mobile radios to support our Rehab/Canteen operation. Two years ago the Fire Bells obtained a FCC License to operate a repeater, and with donations were able to purchase the repeater and some portable radios. The system has proved extremely successful in keeping in contact with Members when we are called out to support fire departments in Racine and Kenosha Counties. As with any volunteer organization our members are not always home when the need for Rehab occurs.

The repeater allows us to determine who is going to get Rehab Car 64, who is enroute to the fire or emergency scene, and what additional supplies we may need. Additionally the repeater and portable radios allow us to send members out from the Rehab Unit to take care of Law Enforcement personnel who are providing security and traffic control. At larger fires or Haz Mat scenes we can keep in touch with Fire Bell members and warn them of potential problems with the scene, while providing Rehab.

Any portable or mobile radios you may have can find a new life helping us, as volunteers, support the 35 fire departments in Southeast Wisconsin. All donations to the Fire Bells are tax deductable as we are classified as an IRS-501-C-3 Tax Exempt, Not-for-Profit organization. If you can help us out please email me at Racine Fire Bells c/o Steve Hansen. Thanks for your support and consideration. Any questions please do not hesitate to contact us.



Maintained by Steve Hansen - Last Updated 09/30/2005