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FAQs

1. Why do the fire engines go to the grocery store? 
Our firefighters spend 1/3 of their lives at the fire station, working a full 24-hour shift and then off for 48 hours. During that time, the crews still need to eat. Each day, between training and running emergency calls, you may see a fire engine or ladder truck parked at the grocery store. They are getting food for the crew which they pay for themselves, prepare for themselves and share at each meal, just as our families do. 


2. What is the difference between a Storm Watch and a Warning I hear about on TV?
A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are possible in a specified area, usually within 36 hours. A Tropical Storm Warning means that tropical storm conditions, including possible sustained winds within the range of 39 to 73 mph, are expected in a specified area usually within 24 hours. A Hurricane Watch means that conditions are possible in a specified area usually within 36 hours. During a Hurricane Watch, you should prepare to take immediate action to protect your family and property in case a Hurricane Warning is issued. In fact, if you wait until a Hurricane Warning is issued, it may be too late to evacuate. Take action early. Hurricane Warnings are issued when sustained winds of 74 mph or higher associated with a hurricane are expected in a specified area within 24 hours or less.You will also hear about Thunderstorm Watches or Tornado Watches, and in those situations, that means the timeline is shorter but the threat is still present. 


3. Why does a fire truck show up when I need an ambulance? 
Every Cape Coral Firefighter is trained as an Emergency Medical Technician with the knowledge and ability to care for a medical emergency. Many of our personnel are paramedics and use the same equipment carried on the ambulance. In some cases, the only difference between an ambulance and our fire engines is the lack of a stretcher to transport to the hospital. At times, there may only be 3-5 ambulances in Cape Coral, but with 10 fire stations and 16 emergency units on the road, we can arrive well ahead of the ambulance. When a child has stopped breathing, or someone is having a heart attack, those extra minutes saved by our arriving first can mean the difference between life and death.