Volunteer Firefighters Save the State Millions

Apr 16, 2013

UNO conducted a study looking at the economic impact volunteer firefighters have in the state of Nebraska throughout the year. 

The results were released by the Nebraska State Volunteer Firefighters Association.

Chief Analyst David Drozd, says UNO conducted the study as a neutral third party.

He says researchers were looking to derive a number to evaluate the economic impact of unpaid firefighters. 

Drozd says Nebraska taxpayers receive $8.6 million annually in free fire protection services. 

"So we have various survey findings showing that recruitment and retention continue to be big issues for local volunteer firefighting forces, especially as a lot of their members are baby boomers, starting to hit age 60 or so and needing to replace those who’ve been involved for a number of years.”

Drozd says one of the key components of the study was a survey that was given to fire chiefs and other individuals involved in firefighting. 

He says the man hours spent just on the 2012 wildfire ended up being at a value of $2.5 million.