The Cottleville Fire Department was founded on January 25, 1908. Funds for the operating budget were initially derived from a 75 cent fee levied per person. If someone opted not to pay the fee, they simply didn’t receive fire protection and could not participate with the fire department. In the beginning, coverage area for the fire department was determined by how far the firefighters could pull the hand drawn equipment from their fire station. That first station was constructed on the same site that our current Fire Station 1 and Administrative offices occupy today.
As the years past and the area grew, so did the department. By 1970, through an increase in the cost of fire tags, bathrooms were added to the fire station. At that time, the district was staffed by an all volunteer force that raised additional monies for the fire department budget through dances, picnics, bake sales, etc. The fire department was truly the center of the community especially when it came to social events.
In 1972, a petition drive was started to allow the Cottleville Fire Department, who by this time served much more than just the City of Cottleville, to become a Fire Protection District. Becoming a fire district would allow the agency to collect a tax for fire protection to meet the needs of the ever growing community. The petition drive was a success thereby transforming the Cottleville Fire Department into the Cottleville Fire Protection District. In 1977, the citizens protected by the district approved a bond issue to construct Fire Station 2.
Throughout the 1980’s the district was able to pass a series of small tax increases that allowed for the hiring of full-time firefighters in an effort to better serve our citizenry. In 1990, the district opened Fire Station 3 at Highway’s 94 and 40 in the Weldon Springs area. In 2000, Fire Station 4 was opened and the district hired six additional personnel.
Today the Cottleville Community Fire Protection District encompasses 38 square miles of St. Charles County that includes five municipalities (Cottleville, Weldon Springs, O’Fallon, St. Peters, and Dardenne Prairie) and areas of unincorporated St. Charles County. The district responds to over 3000 calls a year, and protects a residential population of over 60,000. With the growth of business and industry in the district, our daytime population is well above 100,000. In addition, we are responsible for the coverage of large sections of Highway 94/364, and Interstate 64.
The district consists of four fire stations staffed by 53 EMT and Paramedic firefighters (three platoons). The command staff include Fire Chief Skip Stephens, Assistant Chief Craig Tihen, and Assistant Chief/Fire Marshal Ryan Roberts, Training Officer Mike Cahill, Building Inspector Tracy Williams, Executive Office Manager Kelly Dunkle and Administrative Assistant Jodi Williams. Our crews respond to a wide array of calls that include not only fires, but automobile crashes, medical emergencies, Hazardous Materials Incidents, and highly specialized rescue events. Eleven of our firefighters are part of a highly trained rescue team known as the St. Charles County Special Operations Task Force. Two of our staff officers serve on State, Federal and/or regional teams that provide additional incident command assistance for large disasters.
If you would like any further information about what services the Cottleville Fire District offers or general information, please contact us a 636-447-6655.