Kidder Township Fire May Lose Authorization To Provide Coverage

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A community in Carbon County could soon lose one of its fire companies.

The Kidder Township Supervisors will decide if the Kidder Township Volunteer Fire Company will no longer be authorized in the township over allegations of money mismanagement.

For the people living in a rural community near Jim Thorpe, fire and emergency response is handled by three volunteer fire companies; Kidder Township Fire, Albrightsville Fire and Lake Harmony Fire.

But now, residents could be losing a third of that protection if the Kidder Township Fire Company loses its authorization to provide coverage.

“It`s such a large area, god forbid there`s some incident or some kind of problem, you`re talking about a big delay in getting someone there,” said Mahasin Pegeise. “That`s a risk I wouldn`t want to face, I`ve got small kids, certainly wouldn`t want to see that happen.”

“Sometimes it takes up to 20, 25 minutes for an ambulance to get there, so I honestly think they should have more fire companies in the area because something happens and they can`t get there quick enough,” said Tina Bedford.

Kidder Township supervisors say for the second time in recent years, the Kidder Township Fire Company is being investigated by Kidder Township police for allegations of mishandling funds.

The supervisors are deciding whether to remove Kidder Township Fire from a township ordinance that authorizes Kidder Township as a fire company for the township.

“Our concern is their management of their money and how that management then could possibly reflect into their operations,” said supervisor chairman Tom Bradley.

The volunteers at the Kidder Township Fire Company could not talk about the on-going investigation but say closing them down will increase response time for the two other fire companies.

Albrightsville Fire is about 10 miles away from their fire house; Lake Harmony Fire is nearly 15 miles.

“The first minutes are precious, as it is, it takes us a little bit to get there and get out the door and go to where we need to go, the house at that point could be a total loss,” said Kidder Township Volunteer fire fighter Edward Alonso.

The Kidder Township supervisors are expected to vote on whether to remove the Kidder Township Fire Company from township ordinance next Thursday at 7 pm.