It is the Mission of the Plattekill Fire Department to promote a safe environment for all areas of the Plattekill Fire District through a safe well-trained unit and in responding to all fire emergencies, medical emergencies, Non-emergency public service incidents, and district-wide incidents to the townspeople and taxpayers of Plattekill.
With this mission, the Plattekill Fire Department has four goals:
To reduce the frequency and severity of emergencies through prevention and education.
To minimize suffering, loss of life, property loss, stability from severe medical incidents, and all incidents through a well-trained response program.
To ensure preparedness through training and district-wide education.
To provide the resources and support necessary for the Plattekill Fire Department to accomplish this mission as safely and effectively as possible.
At Plattekill Fire Department (PFD), our goal is to provide expedient, skillful, and cost-effective life safety, fire protection, and emergency medical services to the citizens in the Town of Plattekill and its visitors.
In a small upstate, 35.74 Square mile town, 65 miles north of New York City, adorned by apple orchards, farming, and livestock, the need for fire service came to fruition in Plattekill, N.Y. in 1925…
A short time after, in April of 1926, the Plattekill Fire Department was founded bringing emergency responses to the townspeople of our small upstate farming community to the Towns People of Plattekill and Town of Newburgh. In 1930 we became incorporated as the Plattekill Fire Department, Number 1 of Plattekill, N.Y., Inc. First Chief Joseph Bensel led the Plattekill Fire Department from the years of 1926 & to 1927. The First President of the Plattekill Fire Department was Edward Neuwirth from 1926 to 1931.
As the population gets larger, so does the need for emergency services.
Plattekill Fire Department operates out of 2 stations with 88 members on our rolls. The Town of Plattekill is covered by three great professional volunteer agencies, out of four stations, who regularly work with each other at serious emergency alarms. From Medical alarms to house fires, we are ready to respond.
From Then... To Now.
The Year PFD Began
We officially became incorporated as Plattekill Fire Department number 1 of Plattekill, N.Y. Inc.
Hasbrouck Chemical Company was formed, now known as the Modena Fire Department
October 5th, 1926 the Clintondale Fire Department was founded.
The Plattekill First Aid Unit was started as a part of the Plattekill Fire Department in 1964 when, after many months of discussion, usually at Sisti's General Store, an opportunity presented itself. Vassar Brothers Hospital had a used ambulance for sale. At the time, Local hospitals had been providing emergency ambulance services to Plattekill NY. As dedicated and vital as these services were, response time from Newburgh or Poughkeepsie was very slow. A decision was made by the area hospitals to drop their ambulance services by the end of 1964.
Our first ambulance, a 1957 Chevy, was purchased from Vassar Brothers Hospital in February of 1964 for $500.00. The "committee", George Sisti, Herbert Becker; John Klein, Lester Upright, Ken Birdsall, and Ralph Garcia, went to Vassar Brothers hospital and inspected the ambulance. Realizing that they could not wait for the commissioners to act, these committee members chipped in to secure the purchase. The Plattekill Fire District commissioners thought it was a good idea in principle. Their concern was "Who would be trained to operate the ambulance and provide emergency care? The board of commissioners agreed to purchase and fund the operation of the ambulance when a trained unit could be assembled.
Service to the community officially began in June of 1964 after our members completed their first aid training under the guidance of Roy Pauli, a first aid instructor for the American Red Cross from Clintondale NY. Our first ambulance alarm was on June 25th, 1964, on Church Street for a "heart attack, a patient needing oxygen" and was transported to St.Luke's Hospital in Newburgh NY.
Phil Diamond from Shawangunk Valley Fire Company was an irreplaceable and extreme help to the Plattkill First Aid Unit in those formative months. Shawangunk Valley Fire Company already operated an ambulance as a part of their agency and knew the information and how to make this work. Mr. Diamond and the SVFC provided us with information and the loan of equipment necessary to operate until PFD could buy our own equipment as a part of the 1965 district budget. We kept that Chevy until 1971 when it was sold in 1971 for $400.00 plus $30.00 for additional tires.
We purchased our second rig, a used 1963 Oldsmobile, for $709.90 in 1971. Our first new ambulance, a modular type, was purchased in 1973-4. Our small town of under 2000 residents swelled to over 5000 during the summer months as the resorts brought large numbers into the area.
The Charter Members of the Plattekill First Aid Unit will forever part of who we are. These are those members:
Back row; Bill Dunn, Walt Davidson, Pete Semenyck, June Heneberry, Lenore Dunn, Elmer Holbert, Chuck Conners,
Fred Osterhoudt, Sam Doncel, Bruce Randzin.
Front row: Cathy Dubois, Jackie Wellmon, Grace Anne VanDuser
1974 - Left to Right:
Val Hoppenstedt, Sue Hagen, Grace Anne Van Duser, Dorinda Dembroski, Bobby-Jo Waring, Marion Pauli, Robert Huddleson, Dolly Wring, Lenore Dunn, Don Waring, Gayle Arrasate, Mary Hagen, Elmer Holbert, Toots Hagen
Special mention of Phil Diamond of the Shawangunk Valley Fire Company
In 1964, Plattekill Responded to 250 alarms for service
In 2022, Plattekill Responded to 843 alarms for service
Our busiest year we responded to 1000 alarms of service
The Line Up
2024 Plattekill Fire, EMS, & Department Officers