Athol Fire Department launches new web site

The Athol Fire Department’s new website includes analytics on calls responded to, a staff list and applications for different kinds of permits.

The Athol Fire Department’s new website includes analytics on calls responded to, a staff list and applications for different kinds of permits. SCREENSHOT

By MAX BOWEN

Athol Daily News Editor

Published: 01-23-2024 5:00 PM

Modified: 01-26-2024 1:48 PM


ATHOL — Earlier this month, the Fire Department opened the digital doors to a new website, and the chief said the response has been very positive.

Opened at the beginning of January, the new site replaces one which Fire Chief Joseph Guarnera described as “very generic.” He said that the public wasn’t always aware of the work that the department does and wanted to educate them on this, as well as provide more transparency and resources, such as online permit applications.

“I’m trying to make this a one-stop shop where you can see everything about the department, where it’s been and where it’s going,” said Guarnera.

While talking with Duxbury Fire Chief Rob Reardon, Guarnera said he was impressed with that department’s site, which was made by PIO Design Studio. Guarnera and Deputy Fire Chief Jeffrey Parket met with the company and worked on a site that met their goals. The site is maintained by Webmaster Jessica Laaper, who works with the department on periodic updates.

The new website is a hub of information for the department. The homepage provides the station’s address, administrative hours and links to social media pages. Statistics such as the number of calls responded to, firefighters on staff and the apparatuses used are there as well. Different pages show the staff, the different apparatuses used, community programs such as the Student Awareness of Fire Education and how to set up a lock box for the home, and applications for burn permits and how to become a firefighter. The site is also mobile-friendly with tablets and smartphones.

When asked about his goals for the new website, Guarnera said, “It’s twofold—for me, it’s allowing the public to understand and know the quality and professionalism of who is serving them and the surrounding community. For me, that’s important for me. The second part is a place where people can get information, fire education, educating the youth and elderly—general information and a place to go. For the community to know who is serving the residents.”

The Athol Fire Department’s website is https://www.atholfire.org/.

Max Bowen can be reached at 413-930-4074 or at mbowen@recorder.com.

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