Milwaukee Fire Station 13 reopens after gunfire incident

Chief calls it a "loss for the community"
Posted at 10:02 AM, Feb 22, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-22 18:24:20-05

A Milwaukee Fire Station hit by gunfire Friday has reopened.

Fire Station 13, at 30th and Locust Streets, is the busiest engine company in the state, according to Battalion Chief Dan Lipski.

But following Friday's shooting, the four-person engine company that typically operates out of station 13 was moved to a different facility for a few days as a precaution.

“It was a loss for the community,” Lipski said.

“Everybody that’s in this building chooses to be here, wants to be here, wants to serve,” he said. “They have a drive to help people.”

Lipski said the move likely impacted response times, albeit minimally, in the area around 30th and Locust Streets. But he added the coverage areas for fire stations often overlap.

Lipski said half a dozen shots were fired at the building from 30th Street Friday.

One bullet penetrated a window and ended up lodged in a bookcase, but no one was hurt. Lipski said firefighters were in a different parts of the building eating lunch at the time.

Milwaukee Police continue to investigate the shooting.

Lipski said the fire department decided to reopen the station Wednesday at 8 a.m. after giving those who work there a chance to cool down.

“All of our members did receive peer support and counseling, to ensure that we didn’t have any sort of lingering, traumatic effect from the gunfire in what is effectively not only their place of work, but their residence for 24 hours,” Lipski said.

He said there’s no reason to believe the fire station was targeted.

Lipski added there is a plan in place should any such incident occur again.

“We are prepared. I think we have a good road map for what we need to do to provide two layers of protection, one for our membership and one for the public we serve,” Lipski said.


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