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Village of McFarland, WI

Fire and Rescue Overview


Continue striving to provide the best fire protection, emergency medical care, education, prevention, and rescue services possible by maintaining a well-trained staff equipped with the safest obtainable personal protective equipment, and the best tools, equipment, and apparatus to perform the required duties quickly, safely, and efficiently.

The McFarland Fire & Rescue Department responds to a wide variety of emergency situations including medical emergencies, traumatic emergencies, structure fires, motor vehicle accidents, grass fires, severe storm emergencies, smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, and also water and ice-related emergencies.
To respond to these varied emergencies, the Department's full-time and paid on call Firefighters and EMTs staff a variety of apparatus including two ambulances, two fire engines, a 105 foot ladder truck, a heavy rescue, two water tenders, a brush truck, a rescue boat, an Argo ATV, and a variety of command/support cars for the varying type of incidents the department responds to.
The Department also engages in an aggressive fire prevention program with the McFarland schools and other community groups, by giving station tours, public CPR training, Home Safety Visits, and other events such as Fire Prevention Week activities and our annual Open House. We also conduct fire inspections, enforcing state and local fire codes, and arson investigations. The Department partners with the National Fire Prevention Association (NFPA) for materials used in fire prevention and safety education activities.
The Department works closely with the Police Departments and Civic Departments in providing emergency services and supplies back-up mutual aid to surrounding departments when called upon. The workload of the Department is impacted by the incidence of vehicle accidents that occur on the stretches of U.S. Hwy. 51 and county trunk highways that are within our response area and the variety of challenges posed by serving large, unhydranted rural areas. The Public Protection Charge (the cost to up-size our Village water system), determined by the PSC to compensate the Water Utility for providing stand-by fire protection capacity, is included in the departmental budget.
The McFarland Fire & Rescue Department went through an audit by the Insurance Services Office in 2010, which ranks fire departments via a Fire Suppression Rating Schedule. The “Public Protection Classification” (PPC) derived from this rating schedule directly affects the rates companies charge for fire insurance in a given community. The PPC is based on equipment, water system, training and available personnel for fire response. The classification ranges from 10 to 1, with 1 being the best, and can have a significant impact on the fire insurance rates paid by residents and businesses. We are pleased to report that our ISO classification improved from a Class 4 to a Class 3 for the Village of McFarland and a class 8B for the two townships. There are 45,504 fire districts in the U.S. Of that, 42 are Class 1, 310 are Class 2 and 1180 are Class 3. Our Class 3 ranking puts us in the upper three percent of fire departments nation-wide, a fact that makes our Department and our Water Utility very proud.

The Department is staffed by a full-time Fire & EMS Chief, a Fire Inspector/Public Education Specialist, two Monday through Friday EMTs, and three EMT's that work a rotating 24/48 hour shifts. The Department also relies on an extensive organization of about 68 paid-on-call firefighters, EMT's and officers who are paged to respond to calls. The combination of membership ensures the Department is able to respond promptly and appropriately to requests for service.

The Fire Rescue Department is funded mainly from the Village property tax levy and contracts with area townships. In addition, we receive "2% dues" which is collected on insurance policies by the State and distributed annually to fire departments that participate and properly document fire protection inspections of public buildings in their respective districts. Lastly, monies are collected for fire protection system plan reviews, fuel storage tank inspections and highway incident responses.
We are very grateful to the Village Board, Village officials and the citizens of McFarland for their support of our mission and to allow the McFarland Fire and Rescue Department to exist and to continue protecting the lives, property and environment within the communities served from fires, disasters and emergency incidents through education, prevention and emergency response.

The departmental budget is also supplemented by public donations and by fundraising events (Pancake Breakfast, Donation Newsletters, etc.) conducted by the members through the McFarland Firefighters Association, and the McFarland EMS Association. These additional funds are used for supplemental equipment purchases. In years past the fund raisers have allowed the department to purchase the latest technology in tools for vehicle extrication (“Jaws of Life” and additional hydraulic tools), a rescue boat, an ATV with trailer, two Thermal Imaging Cameras and other equipment that, due to budget limitations could not be secured through normal operating revenue (levy). Most recently, the EMS Association purchased a new power load cot system for one of our ambulances to help prevent back injuries, and the Firefighter's Association purchased a new Thermal Imaging Camera.

If you are interested in donating to either the McFarland Firefighter's Association, or the McFarland EMS Association, contact the department and ask how to go about it. Your donations allow us to keep moving forward with technology and equipment, and help us provide the best care possible for everyone in our response area.

Administration: Provide leadership and support to enable the McFarland Fire and Rescue Department to accomplish its Mission.

Operations: Provide the highest level of emergency response consistent with identified community needs and expectations.

Training: Provide challenging training and education that is current and effective, enabling the McFarland Fire and Rescue Department to accomplish its Mission.

Fire Prevention: Proactively improves life safety, minimize losses and reduce the risks from fire through; education, application of codes and investigation.

Community Relations: Establish community partnerships that complement and enhance the services we provide.

Emergency Preparedness: Prepare and maintain the documents, facilities, equipment and trained personnel to effectively manage and support all incidents/disasters no matter how big or small.


  • Honesty
  • Integrity
  • Teamwork
  • Commitment to Excellence
  • Respect

5915 Milwaukee St. | P.O. Box 110 | McFarland, WI 53558-0110 | ph: 608-838-3153 | fx: 608-838-3619