Study ranks AFR station as one of the busiest in the nation

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – A recent study ranked Albuquerque Fire and Rescue as the sixteenth busiest in the nation. One station in particular stands apart.

The study was done by the Firehouse, a national organization that collects data for the fire service industry.

The data was compiled last year, but the results were just released. It shows that Station 5 in the International District got more than 5,000 calls last year. 

Now, the department has some big plans in place to accommodate the demand. 

“Being at such a busy station does have challenges, the engine for instance running the calls that they did last year they averaged just over 16 calls every 24 hours,” said AFR Public Information Officer Lt. Jason Fejer.  

That call rate is giving them some national attention.

“This year, Engine 5 ranked at number 11 of all the departments that did participate in the Run Survey with 5,947 calls on the year for 2022,” said Fejer.  

Fejer says this is historically on par for this area, but what’s interesting is that it’s the smallest district within AFR.

“Station 5 and its district is a unique area. It is pretty densely populated, we do have some single family dwellings in the district, but it is a lot of multi-family dwellings in the area,” Fejer said. 

The busy work keeps a lot of experienced firefighters coming back. The demand is also sparking change at the station with the addition of a new medic truck to run rescue calls. 

“That truck is running about 300 calls a month, so that’s calls that somebody else would have had to pick up. The thing about being at Station 5 in our busiest district is that everywhere that surrounds us is also busy,” Fejer said.  

The extra truck allows them to run more calls without having to ask surrounding districts. 

“We all got into this line of work though to help people, and that is why I told you it is not always an easy place to get to even though it is so busy, people want to be here,” said Fejer.  

AFR as a whole answered more than 100,000 calls for service in 2022, which is right up there with St. Louis, Missouri.