Village of Waterford, WI
Racine County
By using eCode360 you agree to be legally bound by the Terms of Use. If you do not agree to the Terms of Use, please do not use eCode360.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Village Board of the Village of Waterford as Chapter 5 of the 1998 Code; amended in its entirety 1-14-2013 by Ord. No. 600. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Fire Commission — See Ch. 5.
Emergency management — See Ch. 17.
Burning — See Ch. 100.
Firearms and explosives — See Ch. 131.
Hazardous materials — See Ch. 137.
Subdivision of land — See Ch. 235.

§ 28-1 Fire Department authorized.

[Amended 9-28-2015 by Ord. No. 631]
The Village of Waterford, pursuant to its powers to act for the good order and the health, safety and welfare of the public under §§ 61.34, 61.64, 61.65, 62.13, and 101.14, hereby authorizes and organizes the Waterford Fire and Rescue Department as the Fire Department of the Village; and the duties of firefighting, fire prevention and fire inspection, as well as operation and regulation of the rescue squad, and training therefor, and the operation and maintenance of firefighting and rescue squad equipment, are delegated to such Department. Its organization and regulation shall be governed by the provisions of the Wisconsin Statutes, Wis. Admin. Code ch. SPS 330, Fire Department Safety and Health Standards, this chapter, and by the guidelines adopted by the Village Board, except as otherwise provided by law or ordinance. The Chief shall have control of the Department as set forth in § 28-6. The Fire Commission shall have the authority to hire, promote and discipline the members of the Department as set forth in § 5-5 of this Municipal Code.

§ 28-2 Fire prevention.

The Village of Waterford, pursuant to its power to act for the health and welfare of the public, and in order to protect the public, employees, firefighters and property from the hazards of fire and explosion, hereby adopts Wis. Admin. Code ch. SPS 314, Fire Prevention, in its entirety. Except as provided therein, ch. SPS 314 applies to the use and operation of all public buildings and places of employment and adopts a National Fire Prevention Code, with modifications. The Fire Chief and fire inspectors shall be responsible for enforcement as provided herein.

§ 28-2.1 Rapid-entry key boxes.

A. 
Definitions. "Rapid-entry key boxes" are hereby defined as access boxes, as rapid-entry lock box devices or material lock boxes such as those provided by the Knox Box Company currently in use by this Department.
B. 
Rapid-entry key boxes required. Pursuant to Wis. Admin. Code ch. SPS 314 and the National Fire Prevention Code adopted therein, the Village of Waterford Fire Department elects to require the use of rapid-entry key boxes as set forth in this section.
(1) 
Where required. Rapid-entry key boxes shall be required on all multifamily dwellings of four families or more that have a common entrance or share a common area accessible by all occupants. Rapid-entry key boxes shall be required on all assisted senior housing and community-based residential facilities, industrial and commercial facilities as designated by this Department and any location where entry to the property is secured in whole or part by a fence, gate, wall, or connected buildings, or as otherwise directed by this Department. Entry key override switches shall be required on any exit door at any location which uses a card reader entry system and/or magnetic door lock security system.
(2) 
Location. The Fire Chief shall approve the location prior to installation of any rapid-entry key box. Rapid-entry key boxes shall be located on the front of a building near the main entrance at grade level, unless otherwise directed by the Chief.
(3) 
Contents. The owner, agent or on-site manager shall provide the appropriate keys to the building to be placed in the rapid-entry key box. New keys shall be provided when any locks are changed. Examples of keys to be provided are:
(a) 
A master key or keys to locked points of egress, whether interior or exterior.
(b) 
Keys to locked mechanical rooms.
(c) 
Keys to locked elevator rooms.
(d) 
Keys to elevator controls.
(e) 
Keys to fire alarm panels or equipment.
(4) 
Compliance. This section applies to all buildings and businesses set forth in Subsection B(1) that are new construction, currently under construction, or, because of a change of use, an addition, or remodeling must apply for a certificate of occupancy. Compliance with this section is required prior to the grant of an occupancy permit.
(5) 
Costs and ordering. Property owners shall be responsible for all costs of purchase and installation of any rapid-entry key box, key override switch or other material required by this section. The Village of Waterford Fire Department shall supply forms for ordering any rapid-entry key box, key override switch or material required by this section.

§ 28-3 Department finances.

A. 
Appropriations. The Village Board shall annually appropriate funds to provide for Department operations and for such apparatus and equipment for the use of the Fire Department as it may deem expedient and necessary to maintain efficiency, to provide rescue squad service, and to properly protect life and property from fire.
B. 
Gifts and other contributions. The Fire Department shall submit gifts, donations, contributions or gratuities received by such Department or any branch thereof from any source to the Village Treasurer to be used for the benefit of the Department as designated by the Village Board.
C. 
Compensation. The officers and members of the Fire Department shall receive such compensation from the Village as may be authorized by the Village Board.
D. 
Cost recovery.
(1) 
Pursuant to Wis. Stats. § 61.64, the Village may charge reasonable fees for rescue services.
(2) 
Pursuant to Wis. Stats. § 61.34, the Village may charge reasonable fees for Fire Department responses on streets and highways to nonresidents, provided that Town of Waterford residents may not be billed if the response occurs in the service area of the Town that the Village Fire Department covers by contract and the Town is billed for the call under the contract. When Wis. Stats. § 61.65(8) is applicable, the Village may apply to the State of Wisconsin Department of Transportation for reimbursement of unpaid response fees on state highways.
(3) 
Fees charged pursuant to this section shall be in an amount approved by the Village Board and set forth in the Fee Schedule.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: The fee schedule is on file in the Village offices.

§ 28-4 Organization.

A. 
Composition. The Fire Department shall consist of Village employees, paid on-premises and paid on-call volunteers, and unpaid volunteers, and shall have one Chief, two Assistant Chiefs, one Assistant Chief-EMS, and such other members as are authorized by the Village Board.
B. 
Appointment of officers and members. The Chief shall be appointed by the Fire Commission. The officers and members of the Department shall be appointed by the Chief, subject to confirmation by the Fire Commission, pursuant to the Standard Operating Guidelines of the Department and the Rules of the Commission. The appointments shall be forwarded to the Village Board for its information.
[Amended 9-28-2015 by Ord. No. 631]

§ 28-5 Members.

A. 
Application. Any person desiring to be a member of the Department shall file an application with the Village, which shall forward it to the Fire Commission.
[Amended 9-28-2015 by Ord. No. 631]
B. 
Examinations. No person may be appointed to the Department unless the person passes all examinations and drug tests required by the Village and the Fire Commission.
[Amended 9-28-2015 by Ord. No. 631]
C. 
Qualifications. No person shall be eligible for membership in the Department unless the person meets the requirements set forth in the Standard Operating Guidelines of the Department and the job description for the position.

§ 28-6 Fire Chief.

A. 
Qualifications. To be eligible for the office of Chief, a person must meet the requirements set forth in the Standard Operating Guidelines of the Department and the job description for the position.
B. 
Appointment. The Chief shall be appointed by the Fire Commission and shall hold office for a term of two years unless his or her services be sooner terminated for cause as described in Wis. Stats. § 62.13(5)(em) by the Fire Commission, or by resignation or death.
[Amended 9-28-2015 by Ord. No. 631]
C. 
Powers and duties.
(1) 
General supervision. The Chief shall be the highest ranking officer and shall have general supervision of the Department, which supervision shall be subject to and not conflict with this chapter. The Chief shall be responsible for the personnel, recruitment and general efficiency of the Department.
(2) 
Presiding officer. The Chief shall preside at all meetings of the Department, call special meetings, preserve order, decide all points of order that may arise and enforce a rigid observance of this chapter. The Chief shall be directly responsible to the Village Board.
(3) 
Disciplinary actions. See § 28-7.
(4) 
Department budget. When requested by the Finance Committee, the Chief shall file with the Village Treasurer a detailed estimate of the appropriations needed for the conduct of the Department during the ensuing fiscal year.
(5) 
Reports.
(a) 
Annual. The Chief shall submit a written report to the Village Board not later than October 1 of each year, and at such other times as the Chief deems desirable, relating to the condition of each piece of apparatus and equipment, the number of members of the Fire Department and the Rescue Squad, the total number of active members in the Department and resignations and expulsions from the Department. The Chief shall also report upon the drill and training program of the Department, together with other pertinent information, including recommendations for such improvements as the Chief deems proper and necessary for the operation of the Department.
(b) 
Monthly. The Chief shall keep an accurate and complete record of all of the fire alarm activity and the loss occasioned thereby, together with such other data as may be prescribed from time to time by the Village Board. Such report shall be collated monthly, and a written report shall be presented to the Village Board quarterly, or more frequently if required by the Village Board. The Chief shall also present the quarterly reports submitted by the Assistant Fire Chief-EMS regarding the rescue activity and the fire inspectors' quarterly report regarding the fire inspection activity.
(6) 
Enforcement of fire prevention ordinances. The Chief shall enforce all fire prevention ordinances of the Village and all state laws and regulations pertaining to fire prevention and fire inspection, shall keep citizens informed of fire prevention methods and of the activities of the Department, and shall provide fire education services pursuant to Wis. Stats. § 101.14(2)(cm). The Chief shall provide for the duties of fire inspection imposed by § 101.14(2).
(7) 
Alarm records. The Chief shall keep a record of every fire to which the Department was called and shall record the location of the fire, the time the alarm was received, the cause of the fire, where the fire started, the cause of delay (if any) in responding, the method of extinguishment and equipment used, the names of the members responding and general remarks. The Chief shall require the Assistant Chief-EMS to keep a record of all of the rescue alarms, noting the date, time, location, patient age, address, treatment and care rendered, disposition and members responding.
(8) 
Apparatus inventory. The Chief shall keep an inventory of all apparatus and equipment and an inventory of all hose, showing dates and results of tests on each length, which shall be individually numbered, and shall participate in new item purchases.
(9) 
Duties of commanding officer. The Chief shall perform the duties required of his position by state law and the Wisconsin Administrative Code, shall appoint committees regarding fire matters, and shall perform such other duties as are usually incumbent on the commanding officer of the Fire Department.
(10) 
Reporting. As the department head, the Fire Chief reports to the Village Administrator. The Fire Chief shall provide that an Assistant Chief or other designee report to the Village Administrator in his or her absence.

§ 28-7 Disciplinary action.

[Amended 9-28-2015 by Ord. No. 631]
A. 
Grounds for disciplinary action. The Fire Commission may take disciplinary action against, pursuant to the provisions of Subsection B, any member of the Department who has violated any rule or regulation of the Village, as set forth in the Personnel Manual, the Standard Operating Guidelines, or in other rules or regulations. The Village Administrator shall be informed of such action.
B. 
Procedure. Upon complaint or information and belief that any member of the Department has violated any provision of this section, charges may be filed with the Fire Commission by the Chief, a member of the Commission, the Commission as a body, or any aggrieved person. Such charges shall be in writing and shall be filed pursuant to Wis. Stats. § 62.13(5). The Chief or the Commission may suspend a Department member pending the disposition of the charges. The Commission shall act pursuant to Wis. Stats. § 62.13(5) and Commission rules and regulations.

§ 28-8 Control and care of apparatus.

A. 
Control. The Chief shall have control of all equipment used by the Department and shall be responsible for its proper maintenance. Emergency repairs may be authorized by the Chief, report thereon to be given to the Village Board.
B. 
Use. No equipment shall be used for any purpose except for firefighting and rescue within the Village limits, or in training therefor, except pursuant to an agreement approved by the Village Board. With the approval of the Chief or his or her designee, or, if neither is available, the highest ranking officer available, such apparatus may be used for emergency or training purposes other than firefighting and rescue within the Village and the areas covered by fire protection agreements. Said use is specifically allowed pursuant to the terms of a mutual aid agreement approved by the Village Board.
C. 
Applicability of state emergency vehicles regulations. The provisions of Wis. Stats. §§ 346.03 and 346.19, relating to the operation and control of emergency vehicles, and Wis. Stats. §§ 347.38(4) and 347.25(1), relating to equipment on emergency vehicles, are adopted by reference and made a part of this section as though set forth in full. The drivers of emergency vehicles shall use extreme caution and drive according to the existing conditions.
D. 
Injury to equipment. No vehicle shall be driven over any unprotected hose of the Fire Department when laid down on any street, private driveway or other place without the consent of the officer in command at the scene. No person shall willfully injure any hose, hydrant or fire apparatus belonging to the Village.

§ 28-9 Authority of Department at fires.

A. 
Police powers at fires. The Chief and assistants or officers in command at any fire are hereby vested with full and complete police authority at fires. Any officer of the Department may cause the arrest of any person failing to give the right-of-way to the Fire Department in responding to a fire.
B. 
Control of fires. The Fire Chief may prescribe certain limits in the vicinity of any fire within which no persons, excepting firefighters, rescue personnel and police officers and those admitted by order of any officer of the Police or Fire Department, may come. The Chief may cause the removal of any property whenever it becomes necessary for the preservation of such property from fire or to prevent the spreading of fire or to protect the adjoining property; and during the progress of any fire, he may order the removal or destruction of any property necessary to prevent the further spread of the fire. The Chief may also cause the removal of all wires or other facilities and the turning off of all electricity or other services where the same impede the work of the Department during the progress of a fire.
C. 
Firefighters may enter property. Any firefighter acting under the direction of the Fire Chief or other officer in command may enter upon premises in the vicinity of any building or other property then on fire for the purpose of extinguishing such fire; and if any person hinders, resists or obstructs any firefighter in the discharge of his duty as herein provided, the person so offending shall be deemed guilty of resisting firefighters in the discharge of their duties.

§ 28-10 Fire inspectors.

A. 
Appointment and compensation.
(1) 
Appointment. The Fire Chief shall provide for fire inspections required by Wis. Stats. § 101.14 by appointing fire inspectors, subject to confirmation by the Fire Commission. Each inspector shall become state-certified within his or her first two-year term.
[Amended 9-28-2015 by Ord. No. 631]
(2) 
Compensation. The compensation of the fire inspectors and other conditions of employment shall be established by the Village Board.
(3) 
The fire inspectors shall be under the authority of and report to the Fire Chief.
B. 
Inspections.
(1) 
The Chief shall require that the fire inspectors perform inspections as required by Wis. Stats. § 101.14 to determine and cause to be eliminated any fire hazard or any violation of any law relating to fire hazards or to the prevention of fires.
(2) 
The inspections required under Subsection B(1) shall be made at least one in each nonoverlapping six-month period in every calendar year.
(3) 
The inspectors shall also investigate the storage and handling of explosives and flammable liquids within the Village.
(4) 
Fire inspection fees.
(a) 
Fire inspection fees shall be charged to the property owner of record for each public building and place of employment for and/or within which fire inspection is required by state law, code or regulation, including but not limited to all commercial and industrial buildings, all buildings containing a commercial or industrial use, all residential structures containing a common area, all residential structures having a fire alarm system, and any other building for which inspection is mandated, at an annual rate per separate business space or other applicable use located within a building, in an amount set by the Village Board. These fees shall apply to taxable property and tax-exempt property alike.
[1] 
"Public building" and "place of employment" are defined as set forth in Wis. Stats. § 101.01. A residential structure is defined as a public building when it is a structure for use by three or more tenants. A common area in a residential structure includes, but is not limited to, a common corridor, hallway, stairway, basement, cellar, vestibule, atrium, community room, laundry room, swimming pool room, or entry area.
[2] 
All buildings, structures, and premises owned by the Village government, the town government, the state government, the public school districts, and the United States government shall be exempt from the annual fire inspection fee.
(b) 
The annual fire inspection fee shall constitute a special charge for current services against the property pursuant to Wis. Stats. § 66.0627. The property owners shall be billed in June. Any fee remaining unpaid as of October 31 of each year shall be deemed delinquent and become a lien on the property against which it is imposed. The delinquent special charge, together with an administrative fee per invoice, in an amount to be set by the Village Board, shall be included in the current or next tax roll for collection and settlement under Wis. Stats. ch. 74.
C. 
Record of inspections. The fire inspectors shall make and keep records of each property inspected in the manner and form required by the State Department of Safety and Professional Services under Wis. Stats. § 101.14. Monthly and quarterly reports of inspections conducted and citations issued shall be submitted to the Fire Chief for presentation to the Village Board.
D. 
Correction of fire hazards. When any inspection by a fire inspector reveals a fire hazard, the inspector may serve a notice, in writing, upon the owner of the property, giving such owner a reasonable time in which to remove the hazard, and may require the removal of explosives, flammable liquids or similar hazards within 24 hours. Repairs or alterations necessary to remove the hazardous condition shall be made within the time allowed at the expense of the owner. If the fire hazard is not removed within the time allowed, the fire inspector shall issue a citation. The hazard shall be deemed a nuisance, and the fire inspector may have the same removed by the Village; and the cost of such removal shall be recovered in an action by the Village against the owner of the property and may also be entered in the tax roll as a special charge against the property.
E. 
Entering on premises. The fire inspectors shall be allowed to enter property for the purpose of inspection pursuant to Wis. Stats. § 101.14(1)(b) and (bm). No person shall deny an inspector free access to any property within the Fire Department's jurisdiction at any reasonable time for the purpose of making fire inspections. No person shall hinder or obstruct a fire inspector in the performance of duty or refuse to observe any lawful direction given by the inspector.

§ 28-11 (Reserved)

§ 28-12 Violations and penalties.

Any person who shall violate any provision of this chapter or any order, rule or regulation made hereunder shall be subject to a penalty as provided in Chapter 1, Article II, of this Municipal Code and/or as provided in the Fire Prevention Code adopted in this chapter.