Damascus VFD names Derek Day new fire chief

DAMASCUS- The Damascus Volunteer Fire Department has selected a longtime member as its new chief.

The department on Sunday named Derek Day to replace the retiring John Bricker.

An inspector and basic EMT with the Salem Fire Department since 2005, Day has been on the Damascus department for 22 years, serving as captain for over 15 and assistant chief for the past nearly 10. He had served as interim chief since the beginning of the month.

A 1996 graduate of West Branch, Day lives in Damascus with his wife Brooke and their children Kyle, 7, and Morgan, 4.

Day said he is looking at an immediate goal of increasing membership and a long-term goal of lowering the department’s ISO rating.

The ISO rating utilizes response data to classify a community on a scale of one to 10 and is used by insurance companies to determine premiums; the lower the number the better. Day said it will require intensive collection and organization of documents, reports and other paper work and will likely take five years to get where he wants to be.

For membership, Day said he is looking for new members, especially young ones, but time constraints in today’s world make it hard to find volunteers. He said the department is exploring options to increase staffing.

“We need to be able to get the trucks out the door,” he said.

Anyone interested in joining the department should call Day at 330-853-4418.