- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 7, 2014

PINEVILLE, Ky. (AP) - A southeastern Kentucky community is seeking volunteer firefighters in an effort to reopen two stations that closed nearly three years ago.

The Bell County Volunteer Fire Department board shut down stations in the Colmar and Brownies Creek communities during a funding dispute with the county.

Now, officials want to reopen the stations, but WYMT-TV (https://bit.ly/1fPeduB) reports they need more volunteer firefighters.

“It takes a lot of good hearted people, I guess would be the best way to describe this as a volunteer because you’re not getting self-gratitude, no pay, no reward out of it,” said Bucky Shelby, Bell County Volunteer Fire Department spokesman.

Each station would need between six and 12 volunteers, who must pass training courses before they can be firefighters.

Volunteer John McNab says it’s worth the effort to try.

“When we pull up on scene, the little bit of hope we can give them to save some of their property. Anything we can grab a hold of, something they can remember, is really worth it, more than a paid job. Just salvaging something that they can build their lives back on,” said McNab.

Shelby says reopening the stations would benefit the surrounding communities in more ways than one.

“It would definitely be good for those communities in those areas. It would cut down on our response time dramatically,” Shelby said. And that, in turn, would lead to cheaper insurance rates.

He says they hope to get enough volunteers to reopen the stations this summer.

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Information from: WYMT-TV, https://www.wkyt.com/wymtnews


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