Event to honor Redings Mill Fire District

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REDINGS MILL Mo -- Fire safety and good food will be the focus of a special event to be held Saturday, Feb. 19, at the Redings Mill Fire Department in Newton County, 344 Redings Mill Road, one mile south of Interstate-44, Exit 6 on Missouri Highway 86.

On that date, volunteer firefighters of the Redings Mill Fire Protection District will be honored by state and federal officials for achieving Firewise Community USA status. The public is invited to attend the event, which starts with lunch at noon followed by an awards presentation ceremony. At the ceremony, representatives of the National Fire Protection Association, the Missouri Department of Conservation and Southwest Missouri Resource, Conservation and Development (RC and D) will be among the speakers.

The highlight of the ceremony will be the presentation of a plaque to the Redings Mill Station, honoring the District’s Firewise Community USA status.

Firewise Communities USA is a National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) program co-sponsored by the USDA Forest Service, the U.S. Department of the Interior and the National Association of State Foresters. It is a nation-wide initiative designed to encourage and acknowledge community action that minimizes home loss to wildfire. This program is of special interest to small communities and neighborhood associations that are willing to make efforts to mitigate the hazards and, thus, lower the risk of home damage from wildfire. Mitigations involve adopting various techniques and implementing specific programs tailored to the hazards that are unique to the communities within the district. More information about this national program can be found at www.firewise.org

The Redings Mill Fire Protection District encompasses approximately 13,000 people in a 110-square mile area that covers part of Newton County. Its namesake community, Redings Mill (population 159), is located in northern Newton County at the southern edge of Joplin. This area – despite its designation as a “rural” fire district – has become a textbook example of a wildland/urban interface area. The forested landscape has a heavy sprinkling of both residential and commercial dwellings.

With the help of staff from the Missouri Department of Conservation and Southwest Missouri RC & D, the Redings Mill Fire Protection District developed a pro-active multi-step plan focused on taking steps that would reduce vulnerability of structures and raise awareness about fire safety through ongoing education programs.

For more information about this event, contact Missouri Department of Conservation Southwest Regional Forestry Supervisor Tim Stanton at 417-895-6881, ext. 232.