Inmate Firefighters Assist with Blaze
Multiple Crews Respond
FORSYTH, Ga. – On December 30, 2017, fire station crews from Smith State Prison, Long Unit and Georgia State Prison responded to a fire that broke out at the fire station in Glennville, Ga.
Around 1 p.m., a call was issued for assistance with a large fire and the Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) responded with 18 firefighters. Smith State Prison responded with seven inmate firefighters, Long Unit responded with six inmate firefighters, and Georgia State Prison responded with five inmate firefighters. Tattnall County Fire assisted the inmate firefighter crews and Glennville Fire Department (FD) extinguished the flames. The Red Cross also responded to the scene.
Glennville FD was able to evacuate the building quickly after staff noticed smoke coming from an air conditioning vent. The fire appeared to have started in the attic area of the fire station and is currently being investigated. No injuries were reported and the station received extensive damage.
GDC fire teams work seamlessly with each other and municipal departments throughout the state of Georgia. The GDC Fire Services unit operates 19 fire stations in state prisons and six in county prisons across the state of Georgia. The firefighter program provides fire protection to state property and 51 local counties and cities surrounding the 25 state and county prisons across Georgia.
Inmate firefighters are certified, through O.C.G.A. Title 25, and can be hired as career firefighters. The fire chief and inmates often train and work side by side with local full time and volunteer fire departments. More than 220 inmates participate in the inmate firefighter program.
The GDC has one of the largest prison systems in the U.S. and is responsible for supervising nearly 52,000 state prisoners. It is the largest law enforcement agency in the state with approximately 10,500 employees.
For more information on the GDC call 478-992-5247 or visit http://www.gdc.ga.gov