Borough of Garwood, NJ
Union 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: Derived from Chapter 11 of the 1974 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Length of service award program — See Ch. 19, Art. I.
Fire prevention — See Ch. 83.
[Amended 10-27-1987 by Ord. No. 87-30]
The Fire Department of the Borough of Garwood shall consist of a Chief, Assistant Chief, three Deputy Chiefs, Captain, First and Second Lieutenants, and such engine companies, hose and hook and ladder companies, as the Council may, from time to time, authorize by resolution or ordinance.
[Amended 7-14-1998 by Ord. No. 98-09]
A. 
Officers; chain of command.
(1) 
The Fire Department shall consist of the following officers and men in the order of chain of command:
Chief
1
First Deputy Chief
1
Second Deputy Chief
1
Third Deputy Chief
1
Assistant Chief
1
Captain
1
First Lieutenant
1
Second Lieutenant
1
(2) 
Members as may be appointed as hereafter provided and total officers and members shall not exceed 50 members in aggregate.
B. 
Election of officers.
(1) 
Nominations of the officers shall be made only at the regular meeting in the month of November. Officers will be balloted on at the regular meeting in the month of December, and a majority of votes cast shall elect.
(2) 
Officers elected shall assume their duties on January 1 and shall hold office for one year or until their successor is elected and qualified.
(3) 
The election shall be conducted by a Board of Election appointed by the Captain and shall consist of a judge and two tellers.
(4) 
Candidates for office must be in good standing to be nominated for office. Members must be in good standing to vote.
(5) 
After the election of officers, the department shall request the Mayor and Council to appoint and confirm same, which appointments shall be made as of January 1 for the year following.
(6) 
Candidates for line officers must have the following length of service.
(a) 
Chief, having served one term as Assistant Chief.
(b) 
Assistant Chief, having served one term as Captain.
(c) 
Captain, having served one term as First Lieutenant.
(d) 
First Lieutenant, having served one term as Second Lieutenant.
(e) 
Second Lieutenant, having been three years a member of the Fire Department.
(7) 
No Line Officer shall be permitted to hold his office for more than three successive terms.
The Chief and Assistant Chief shall have their appointment confirmed by the Mayor and Council once their names have been submitted by the Fire Department. They shall make such rules and regulations for conducting their Department, not inconsistent with the laws of this state or the ordinances of the Borough of Garwood, as they may deem advisable, always subject to the approval of the Council.
A. 
There shall be three Deputy Chiefs as authorized by this article. The Fire Chief, at the expiration of his term, shall automatically qualify for and be appointed First Deputy Chief. The remaining Deputy Chiefs shall be designated Second and Third Deputy Chiefs. The Deputy Chiefs shall be selected as follows:
(1) 
First Deputy Chief: Outgoing Fire Chief.
(2) 
Second Deputy Chief: Fire Chief preceding First Deputy Chief.
(3) 
Third Deputy Chief: Fire Chief preceding Second Deputy Chief.
B. 
In the event of a vacancy in the position of First Deputy Chief, Second Deputy Chief or Third Deputy Chief caused by any event other than the expiration of the term of a Deputy Chief, the Fire Chief shall appoint a member who has formerly held the position of Fire Chief to the vacancy in the position of Deputy Chief. The term of the appointee shall be the balance of the calendar year of the appointment. If the expiration of the appointive term results in a vacancy in the position, the Fire Chief shall appoint a similarly qualified member to the vacant position, which member may be the last appointee or any other former Fire Chief.
[Added 3-27-2007 by Ord. No. 07-08]
[Amended 10-27-1987 by Ord. No. 87-30]
No person shall be appointed to the office of Chief and/or the office of Assistant Chief for more than three successive terms of one year each.
The Chief shall be the Fire Marshall, Fire Inspector and Fire Prevention Officer of the Borough and as such shall perform such duties as may be required by the laws of the State of New Jersey and applicable ordinances of the Borough.
A. 
The Chief shall examine, at least once in each month, the engine and other houses, fire engines, hose and other fire apparatus, hydrants, and shall keep a record of the date of such examinations, and of the condition in which the above items were found by him. At the end of each month, the Chief shall make out a full report to Council at their first regular meeting with such recommendations as he may deem necessary and proper.
B. 
The Chief shall keep an accurate record of the names of the officers and members of the Fire Department, and of all elections, appointments, transfers, resignations, and removals of firemen belonging to each company, the commencement of their term of service in the Fire Department, or any other Fire Department in this state and such other particulars as may be necessary and proper.
C. 
The Chief shall, in all cases of fire threatening damage or destruction to property in the Borough, take prompt and efficient measures, and use the means of the Department to extinguish the same, and shall, at all such times, and on all occasions of alarm of fire, have sole and absolute control over all members of the Fire Department and all their fire engines, and other apparatus, and all other persons siding or assisting the department in cases of actual fire. In the absence of the Chief, the command of the Fire Department shall devolve upon the Assistant; in absence of the Chief and the Assistant Chief, upon the Deputy Chiefs, Captain or the Lieutenant of the several companies in order so designated by the Chief.
D. 
The Chief and the Assistant Chief shall cause the goods and chattels in danger of fire to be carefully removed to some suitable place, and prevent them from being injured or stolen; they shall prevent all persons, except members of the Fire Department, the owner, or occupant of the premises, and such persons as they may call to their assistance, from entering any dwelling or other building on fire, or immediately adjoining thereto, if necessary.
E. 
The Chief shall keep a record of alarms of fires, and of all fires that may occur within the Borough, with the cause thereof, whenever the same can be ascertained, the names of the owners or occupants, the amount of loss in each case and also the amount of insurance, as near as the same can be ascertained.
F. 
The Fire Chief has the authority to appoint Fire Police in the Borough of Garwood as per state statue, L. 1947, c. 293, N.J.S.A. 15:8-4 as enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey.
A. 
The Assistant Chief shall assume the duties and responsibilities of the Chief in the absence of the Chief.
B. 
The Assistant Chief shall keep an accurate record of each member of the Fire Department. This record includes dates of entering and leaving the Department, annual percentage records and any charges and the results of hearings.
C. 
The Assistant Chief shall assist the Fire Chief in any way that is beneficial to the proper functioning and operation of the Garwood Fire Department.
D. 
The Assistant Chief shall assist in the Fire Department training programs.
E. 
The Assistant Chief shall serve on Fire Department Committees by the appointment of the Fire Chief.
[Amended 10-27-1987 by Ord. No. 87-30]
Each and every Engine, Hose and Hook and Ladder Company shall be under the direction and control of the Captain and the Lieutenants. The Captain and Lieutenants shall be elected on the first Wednesday of December in each year by the Fire Department. The election shall be reported to the Chief for approval, and to the Council for confirmation, and any vacancy that may occur during the year shall be filled in like manner; and in the event of a failure to fill the offices of the Captain, First and Second Lieutenant, or any of them, as above provided, before January 1 in any year, the Chief shall recommend to the Council suitable Firemen for such offices, and upon confirmation by Council they shall be deemed duly qualified and constitute as such officer or officers as the case may be.
[Amended 10-27-1987 by Ord. No. 87-30]
A. 
Captain.
(1) 
It shall be the duty of the Captain to command the company and to have control thereof while on duty, parade and all other occasions. All orders given by him on these occasions shall be implicitly obeyed.
(2) 
The Captain will obey all orders from the Chief or ranking officers. In the absence of ranking officers, at a fire, the Captain shall be in command.
(3) 
He shall see that the rules for the care and management of the apparatus are obeyed. He shall be held responsible for the state of the apparatus, appurtenances, and for the apparatus being supplied with proper and prescribed equipment necessary for its efficient service.
(4) 
It shall be the duty of the Captain to call all regular and special meetings and to preside at all meetings.
(5) 
The Captain shall assist in preparing all Fire Department training programs.
(6) 
The Captain shall be in charge of a duty crew.
B. 
First Lieutenant.
(1) 
The First Lieutenant shall assist the Captain with performing his duties.
(2) 
The First Lieutenant will be assigned to a pumper and be responsible for the proper care and operation of his assigned pumper.
(3) 
The First Lieutenant will report to the Captain who in return will communicate requests to the Chief for any equipment needed, or repair to be made to the fire engine or other fire apparatus.
(4) 
The First Lieutenant shall assume command at fires if a superior officer is not present or until relieved by a superior officer.
(5) 
The First Lieutenant shall assist in the Fire Department training program.
(6) 
The First Lieutenant shall be in charge of a duty crew.
C. 
Second Lieutenant.
(1) 
The Second Lieutenant shall assist the First Lieutenant in the performance of his duties.
(2) 
The Second Lieutenant will be assigned to a pumper and be responsible for the proper care and operation of his assigned pumper.
(3) 
The Second Lieutenant shall assume the duties of the First Lieutenant in his absence.
(4) 
The Second Lieutenant shall be in charge of a duty crew.
D. 
All officers.
(1) 
All officers shall maintain a constant alertness regarding conditions at fires where the safety of the members may be jeopardized.
(2) 
All officers are required to set an example to subordinates regarding conduct, appearance, proper gear, and respect for superiors. All officers shall execute all orders received from superiors.
(3) 
All officers shall see that all equipment used at a fire is accounted for before returning to quarters.
(4) 
All officers shall wear full turnout gear:
(a) 
Coat.
(b) 
Helmet.
(c) 
Boots.
(d) 
Gloves when responding to fires on the exterior of the apparatus and during all fires.
[Amended 10-27-1987 by Ord. No. 87-30]
A. 
The Fire Chief can appoint the Deputy Chiefs to head the Fire Prevention, Fire Inspection or Fire Department Training Bureaus.
B. 
Deputy Chiefs shall assist the Fire Chief and Assistant Fire Chief in any way that is beneficial to the proper functioning and operation of the Garwood Fire Department.
C. 
Deputy Chiefs shall assist in the training programs, be assigned to mutual aid calls, and be in charge of a duty crew.
D. 
Deputy Chiefs shall serve on Fire Department Committees by the appointment of the Fire Chief.
Each company shall also elect a Secretary, and shall adopt such rules and bylaws as may be necessary for their government, subject to approval, and such rules and ordinances as may be adopted by the Council for the regulations of the Fire Department.
A. 
It shall be the duty of the Secretary to keep a record of all proceedings of the Department, to call the roll, to record all absences, and preserve the records of the Department, and to notify all members of meetings.
B. 
The Secretary shall send the names of new members and new officers to the Mayor and Council. He shall also notify the Secretary of the Local Firemen's Relief Association of new members.
[Amended 10-27-1987 by Ord. No. 87-30]
A. 
Any citizen of the United States, between the ages of 18 and 45 inclusive of his or her 46th birthday, who resides within three miles of the Borough limits shall be eligible to probationary membership in the Department, providing he or she has passed a physical examination as required by the New Jersey Firemen's Association and a background check by the Garwood Police Department and has been approved by the Mayor and Council of the Borough of Garwood. It shall be limited that no more than 28% of the members of the Department reside outside the Borough of Garwood.
[Amended 5-25-2004 by Ord. No. 04-08; 11-9-2004 by Ord. No. 04-17; 4-12-2005 by Ord. No. 05-07; 7-9-2013 by Ord. No. 13-10]
B. 
The term "probationary" shall mean that all new members shall be held under scrutiny for a period of one year by the officers of the Department in regard to their adherence of fire duties and all other department obligations.
C. 
After a period of one year from the date of entry into the Department, the Chief, Assistant Chief, Deputy Chiefs, Captain, Lieutenants, and Recording Secretary shall meet to determine whether or not the new probationary member has met the qualifications of the Department in order to determine their eligibility for full membership. They shall be given full rights of the department from the date of their entry. If it is determined at such a meeting that a probationary member does not qualify for full membership, that person shall be dropped from the department.
D. 
The Captain of the Department shall report the findings of such a meeting to the Department as a whole. The Recording Secretary shall take minutes of such a meeting and report the same to the Department at the next regular meeting.
E. 
Any member shall have the privilege of placing the names of applicants for membership. Applications shall be accompanied by the fee of $1. Date of receipt of application by the Recording Secretary shall be put on the same, and the applicant will be put on a waiting list in that sequence. Candidates shall become probationary members if they receive a majority vote by ballot. All new members shall be confirmed by the Mayor and Council and sworn in by the Borough Clerk and his application notarized.
F. 
No probationary member will have voting privileges.
G. 
A person over the age of 45 may be elected to membership in the Garwood Fire Department pursuant to the provisions hereinabove set forth if, in the judgment of the officers and members of the Department and the Mayor and Council, said person over 45 years of age is qualified for membership by virtue of:
[Amended 11-9-2004 by Ord. No. 04-17]
(1) 
At least five years of prior service as a member of a fire department.
(2) 
Employment in private industry for a period of at least five years in a job capacity wherein fire-fighting technique is an integral part; or
(3) 
Has such other skills and technical training in fire-fighting science and technique as will, in the judgment of the foregoing, justifying an exception to the age limit requirements set forth above.
H. 
No person shall be elected under the overage exception set forth herein unless and until a full physical examination has been conducted of said applicant and the results thereof have been evaluated by the Fire Department and the Mayor and Council to assure that said person is physically fit and qualified to perform the duties of fireman.
[Amended 10-27-1987 by Ord. No. 87-30]
A. 
It shall be the duty of all members of this Department to obey all commands of their Officers.
B. 
It shall be the duty of all members to attend all meetings, drills, to respond to all fires and emergency alarms.
C. 
No member shall appear at a meeting of the Department or on duty in a state of intoxication or shall be guilty of using insulting, indecent, or improper language or be guilty of unbecoming conduct or otherwise being a disgrace to the Department, under penalty of expulsion by the chair.
D. 
No member shall be excused from attending any regular meetings, drills, or special meetings except on the grounds of sickness, or absolute necessity, or by the approval of the Chief, or ranking officer.
E. 
Any member who expects to be absent from the Borough for a period of 21 or more days shall report to the Chief and may be excused; and it shall be the duty of the Chief to report all such absences to the Department, and a record of same shall be kept by the Secretary.
F. 
It shall be the duty of each and every member to notify the Secretary of any changes in residence within five days of change. If a member moves outside the three-mile Borough limit, he or she shall tender his or her written resignation within 30 days of moving, or the Secretary shall consider it automatically received after 30 days, and drop that member from the rolls.
[Amended 11-10-1988 by Ord. No. 88-29; 5-25-2004 by Ord. No. 04-08]
G. 
Each fireman must do 60% of fire duty for two consecutive years in order to qualify for, and to retain membership in the Department.
H. 
To help reach the required amount of duty, members may receive credit for the following:
(1) 
Fire and drills.
(2) 
House duty (Chairman to verify actual duty performed).
(3) 
Committee activities.
(4) 
Any assigned extra duty by the Chief.
(5) 
Holding elected office, each term.
(6) 
Outside fire training.
I. 
Every person not a fireman, who shall be present at a fire, shall be subject to the orders of the Chief, Assistant, or any other member of the Fire Department or Police Department preserving order, or superintending the removal and protection of property.
J. 
All members shall wear full turnout gear: Coats, helmets, boots, and gloves when responding to fire on the exterior of the apparatus and during the fires.
[Amended 12-14-2010 by Ord. No. 10-20]
A. 
Purpose: The following are the procedures for disciplinary action against any member of the Garwood Fire Department who may violate any of the standard operating guidelines, personnel orders, special orders, general orders, department rules and regulations or this chapter.
B. 
Guidelines:
(1) 
All disciplinary actions are to be reported to and investigated by or at the direction of the Chief of the Department.
(2) 
Any officer or firefighter may report misconduct to the Chief of the Department for an investigation. All reports shall be submitted in writing to the Chief of the Department within 72 hours after the event in question, if practicable.
(3) 
The Chief of the Department shall hear and determine all disciplinary actions against members of the Fire Department.
(4) 
The following shall be the presumptive penalty in the event of a finding of misconduct:
(a) 
First offense: Written warning and conference with the Chief of the Department.
(b) 
Second offense: One-month suspension from all activities of the Garwood Fire Department.
(c) 
Third offense: Three-month suspension from all activities of the Garwood Fire Department.
(d) 
Subsequent offenses: Removal from the Garwood Fire Department.
(5) 
In the event that the Chief shall determine that the particular offense warrants less or more severe disciplinary action, the Chief shall refer the penalty to the officers of the department, who shall, by majority vote, determine the discipline to be imposed.
C. 
Appeals.
(1) 
Any member found guilty of any disciplinary charge shall have the right to appeal the ruling of the Chief of the Department. All appeals must be filed in writing with the Chief of the Department no later than 48 hours after the Chief's initial ruling. The following is the process for all appeals:
(a) 
Chief of the Department's ruling.
(b) 
Appeal to Board of Officers at the next scheduled officers meeting. (Note: if an officer is involved in the incident he will be omitted from the Board.)
(c) 
Appeal to the Borough of Garwood Fire Committee.
(2) 
The ruling made by the Borough of Garwood Fire Committee is deemed final and no other appeals may be made.
(3) 
If the Chief of the Department is involved in the incident, the process will start with a review and decision made by the Board of Officers.
A. 
No fire engine, hook and ladder truck or other apparatus shall in going to or returning from a fire, or at any time, be driven upon any sidewalk or lawn of any street, except by special order of the Chief, Assistant Chief or officer in charge, and any fireman violating this rule shall be liable for dismissal from the Fire Department.
B. 
Whenever any fire engine, or other fire apparatus needs any repairs, or other alterations, it shall be the duty of the person in charge of such fire engines, or other fire apparatus, to report the same to the Chief, who will see that necessary repairs are made and report same to the Council.
C. 
No person, or persons, except officers and members of the Department shall at any time enter the fire house or apparatus floor of the Garwood Fire Department, except the Mayor and Council, the Borough Clerk, Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary, and visitors accompanied by members, or any Police Officer in the proper discharge of his duty. The Captain and Lieutenant are hereby enjoined to enforce the provisions of this section.
D. 
Any person who shall enter the fire house with the intent to injure or damage the same, or the fire engines or any other apparatus or equipment belonging to the Fire Department as well as injuring or damaging fire hydrants, fire alarm boxes or any alarm equipment in the Borough of Garwood, shall on conviction be punished by law, and shall be liable for all damages or injury done.
A. 
No person shall, during a fire or drill, drive any vehicle over any fire hose or interfere with any fire apparatus or fireman performing their duty under penalty of $25.
B. 
No person or persons shall raise, create or continue a false alarm of fire, under penalty of $50 for each offense or as may otherwise be directed by appropriate state law.
C. 
No person or persons shall for any purpose take or cause to be taken beyond the corporate limits of the Borough, any of the apparatus of the Fire Department, except the Fire Department, except by consent of the Fire Chief or by the Mayor and Council.
It shall be the duty of the Council to provide for the necessary expenses for the maintenance of the Fire Department, and to keep the houses and fire apparatus in proper condition and repair.
[1]
Editor's Note: Former § 27-20, Superintendent of Fire Alarm System, was repealed 12-5-2006 by Ord. No. 06-22.
A. 
Appointment. The Superintendent of Fire Apparatus shall have his appointment confirmed by the Mayor and Council once his name has been submitted by the Fire Department. The Superintendent of Fire Apparatus shall be a member of the Fire Department. However, if there is no qualified person in the Fire Department, then the Mayor and Council can appoint a qualified resident of the Borough of Garwood. The Superintendent shall hold office for a term of one year or until his successor is appointed and qualified, said term to commence on the first day of the year.
B. 
Duties. The Superintendent of Fire Apparatus shall be responsible to and under the direct supervision of the Fire Chief of the Borough of Garwood, and shall be responsible for the maintenance and perfect working order of all the fire apparatus of the Borough. He shall examine once in each week the fire engines and other accessory equipment and fire apparatus and shall keep a record of such examination and of the condition in which the said fire engines and other accessory equipment were found by him and he shall, prior to each regular meeting of the Council, make out a full report of the same and present said report to the Chief of the Fire Department. The Chief of the Fire Department shall after examination of said report, render said report together with any and all observations and recommendations he may have concerning the subject matter of the report to the Council at the regular meeting.
[Amended 11-21-1989 by Ord. No. 89-19]
A. 
The governing body may annually, by resolution, appropriate such sums as it deems necessary and proper to compensate members of the Fire Department for losses incurred in the performance of public fire duty. The sums appropriated shall be paid in full to each member who has attended in each year at least 60% of the alarms of fire, roll calls and house duties. A percentage of the sums appropriated shall be paid on a sliding scale to be fixed annually by the governing body for all members who have attended less than 60% but at least 30% of all such alarms. No payment shall be made to members attending less than 30% of such alarms. The payment of such compensation shall be made on an annual basis in accordance with a schedule to be adopted from time to time by resolution of the governing body after obtaining the recommendation of the Fire Department. A copy of said schedule shall be filed in the office of the Borough Clerk. In no event shall the payments provided for by this section exceed the sums appropriated by the governing body for said purpose.
B. 
The payments of compensation shall be based upon a year commencing November 1 and ending on October 31 and certifications of payments to be made hereunder shall be submitted by the Chief of the Fire Department, or other officer designed by it, to the Mayor and Council no later than the 15th day of November, following the close of the fiscal year.
C. 
The compensation for the Superintendent of Fire Apparatus shall be fixed by ordinances, provided he or she has attended in each year at least 60% of the alarms of fire, roll calls and house duties.
[Amended 12-5-2006 by Ord. No. 06-22]
A. 
Appointment. The Fire Chief shall recommend to the Council for appointment not more than six members of the Department to be designated fire police.
B. 
Duties.
(1) 
The duties of said fire police, subject to the supervision of the Fire Officer in charge of the fire or fire drill, shall be as follows:
(a) 
Protect property and contents.
(b) 
Establish and maintain fire lines.
(c) 
Perform such traffic duties as necessary, from the fire station to and at the vicinity of the fire, fire drill or other emergency call, until the arrival of a duly authorized police officer.
(d) 
In the absence of investigating authorities, fire police shall investigate all causes of fires and preserve all evidence pertaining to questionable fire and turn evidence over to proper investigating authorities.
(e) 
Wear the authorized fire police badge on the left breast of the outermost garment while on duty.
(2) 
Provided, however, nothing herein contained shall give the fire police or any of them the right to supersede a duly authorized police officer.
(3) 
If any person shall unreasonably refuse to obey the orders of the fire police such fire police may arrest him and keep him under arrest until the fire is extinguished or the drill completed. If the offender is found guilty by a municipal court or county district court, he shall be sentenced to pay a fine not exceeding $200 and costs.
C. 
Term. The term of office of each fire police shall be for a period not exceeding five years from the date of appointment.
[Added 8-25-2015 by Ord. No. 15-17]
It is hereby established the Junior Firefighters Program.
A. 
No person shall be eligible for membership in the Junior Firefighters Program in the Borough of Garwood unless he/she is between the ages of 14 (or have started the 8th grade) and 18 years and must reside in the Borough of Garwood, Borough of Kenilworth, Town of Westfield or Township of Clark.
[Amended 6-12-2018 by Ord. No. 18-16]
B. 
All persons shall be required to obtain permission to join the program from their parents or guardians. Such permission shall be in writing and acknowledged by a notary public of the State of New Jersey.
A. 
Insurance coverage will be provided to the members of the Junior Firefighters Program pursuant to the statewide insurance workmen's comp policy.
B. 
Coverage shall be limited to the provisions of the insurance endorsement.
A. 
The Mayor and Council of the Borough of Garwood authorizes the Garwood Fire Department to establish rules and regulations governing the activities of the junior firefighters. Said rules and regulations shall provide for the training of the prospective members for eventual membership in the Volunteer Fire Department of the Borough of Garwood, which regulations shall further provide that no junior firefighter shall be required to perform duties which would expose him/her to the same degree of hazard as a regular member of the Borough's Fire Department.
B. 
In addition to the above relating to junior firefighters, the Borough of Garwood shall require that the minimum age for the junior program of the firefighters shall be 14 (or started in the eighth grade) years.
In addition to the authority granted to the Fire Department and its board of fire officers in other sections of this chapter, the Garwood Fire Department shall have the right to:
A. 
Adopt appropriate training guidelines for all firefighters within the Department including, without being limited to, the following:
(1) 
Firefighter 1.
(2) 
Vehicle extrication training.
(3) 
Blood-borne pathogen training.
(4) 
Driver's training.
(5) 
Mask fit and respiratory protection review.
B. 
Adopt rules, regulations and requirements for implementation and management of the Junior Firefighter Program.