Hampton Bays Fire Company, Inc.
Hampton Bays, L.I., N.Y. 11946
Over 85 Years of Community Service
Prior to 1930 Hampton Bays or Good Ground as it was known as back then, had to rely on Southampton Fire Department for fire protection. After a serious fire on Lynn Ave, many residents agreed that Hampton Bays needed it's own fire company. At that time there were nearly 800 families living here year round.
On May 28, 1930 the Hampton Bays Fire Company, Inc. was organized and chartered by the State of New York. Thirty-eight men, with last names now familiar to Hampton Bays, such as Bangston, Sinclair, Langsdorf, Jacobs, Meschutt, Zarro, Carter and Penny, just to name a few, made up this newly formed fire company. John Carter was elected as the company's first chief and served in that position for 14 years. Since then, thirty-three others have served in the position of chief. Serving on the first Board of Fire Commissioners were Jacob Rieger, Fred Phillips and Leo Ash. In late 1930 the firehouse was built on its present site.
The first equipment housed in the new firehouse was a 1929 Chevrolet with a side mounted two-hundred-fifty gallon per minute pump and a 1928 Cadillac truck, which was converted to a hose truck. Soon after, a 1930 Seagrave with a front mounted five hundred gallon per minute pump was added to the fleet. In 1943 this same truck was destroyed by a raging brush fire in Shinnecock Hills. The bell from this truck was refurbished and is now displayed in the firehouse.
During the war, the department experienced a manpower shortage, as did many east end communities. It was not unusual to see a fire truck pull up to the Hampton Bays School to pickup several teenaged students to assist with an alarm.
Over the years there have been many many incidents, too many to recount them all, but possibly the most spectacular fire in the history of Hampton Bays was the King Industries fire in 1957. Firemen from Hampton Bays, East Quogue and Southampton fought the blaze for more than twenty-four hours. The night after extinguishing the King Industries fire, those same members were called out again to fight a fire at the Canoe Place Inn.
The Board of Fire Commissioners have been dedicated in providing the residents of Hampton Bays with the most up-to-date Fire Fighting and Rescue equipment and apparatus. The Department currently maintains five "Class A" Pumpers (each with the capacity to pump a minimum of 1500 gallons of water per minute when needed), which are three engines, a 100 ft Tower Ladder and a 3,000 Gallon Tanker, a Rescue/Light Truck, two Brush Trucks, two Fire Police Units, Ice Rescue Hovercraft, a deuce and a half, and in addition, the Department has a Technical Rescue Unit and a Dive & Water Rescue Unit.
Currently, the Department operates out of two locations in Hampton Bays - the Main Firehouse on Montauk Highway and Station 1 at 106 Ponquogue Avenue, which was opened in 2008.
The Hampton Bays Fire Department has grown to almost 100 All Volunteer members. They respond to over 400 alarms per year and train hundreds of hours per year. Members also take time throughout the year to visit the local schools to talk about Fire Safety and Prevention.
The times may have changed, but the community spirit and dedication to duty still exists. The Volunteer Fire Department is still a vital part of this community and its members are dedicated to protecting it from the threat of fire and other emergencies.
The Board of Fire Commissioners, Chiefs, Officers, & Men & Women of the Hampton Bays Fire Company wish to remind the community that the best protection from the threat of fire is prevention and that "there is no honor in fighting a fire that could have been prevented through education".