Asbury Park Fire Chief Kevin Keddy hopes to implement a regional emergency alert system, which would allow fire departments throughout Monmouth County to share resources. Keddy has been studying the concept since the 1980s and has looked at similar programs in other states that have been successful. While Keddy says the regional system will improve service, Neil Den Braven of the Ocean Grove Fire Department worries that change may cause some longtime volunteer firefighters to quit. NJToday’s Lauren Wanko files this report from Asbury Park.
Most of the fire departments in Monmouth County are made up of volunteers, but Asbury Park has 55 fire department members on staff. Keddy said a regional system would allow volunteers and staff firefighters to work together and could lead to careers for some volunteers.