[HISTORY: Adopted by the Council of the Borough of Milford 7-6-1970 as Ch. 3 of the Revised General Ordinances. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The Fire Department of the Borough of Milford shall consist of a Chief, three assistants and such engine-, hook- and laddermen as may be appointed by the Council.
On the recommendation of the firefighters, the Chief and assistants shall be appointed by the Council, from time to time, in such manner as they may, by resolution, provide and shall hold office for one year and until their successors qualify.
No person shall become a member of the Fire Department unless he is at least 16 years of age, agrees to perform the duties of a firefighter as prescribed in this chapter and receives a recommendation by vote of the members of the Department.
The firefighters shall constitute one company and shall be assigned, from time to time, by the Chief to duty or service on the fire engine, hook and ladder truck and hose cart or tender. The company shall consist of as many members as the Council shall, from time to time, appoint. The company shall nominate and recommend to the Council for appointment such qualified persons as apply for membership in the company.
Every member of the Fire Department shall receive a membership card executed and signed by the Clerk and the Mayor and a metallic badge upon the terms and conditions hereafter specified. The membership card shall be furnished by the Clerk to the Chief and shall be delivered by him to the person entitled to receive it. The commencement of the term of service of each person appointed as a member of the Department shall be from the date of the delivery to him of the badge and membership card.
The Chief shall devote his time and attention to the faithful discharge of the duties of his office. He shall examine, at least once a month and more often if necessary, the engine house, fire engine, hose and other fire apparatus, the public hydrants and the water supply and shall keep in his office a record of the date of the examination and the condition in which the equipment was found by him. He shall, under the direction of the Milford Borough Fire Liaison and Chair, superintend in person and direct all ordinary and necessary repairs to the engine house, fire engine, hose and other apparatus which may be ordered to be built or repaired, and he shall certify all accounts for such work.
He shall keep a record of the names of the officers and members of the Fire Department and of all appointments, resignations and removals of the firefighters as they take place from time to time.
Where fire threatens damage to or destruction of property within the Borough, the Chief shall take prompt and efficient measures and use the means of the Department to extinguish the fire. He shall, at such times and on occasions of alarm of fire, have sole and absolute control and command over all the fire apparatus and members of the Fire Department and over persons aiding and assisting the Department in cases of actual fire.
In the absence of the Chief at any fire, the command shall devolve upon an assistant according to the regulations established for that purpose by the Department.
On the first Monday of March in each year and at such other times as the Council shall require or when, in his judgment, the interest of the Department demands it, the Chief shall report the condition of the public water supply and hydrants, the engine house and the fire apparatus and make recommendations he deems necessary.
The Chief shall inquire into all violations of the provisions of this chapter or of any law of the State of New Jersey relating to the prevention or extinguishment of fires and shall cause legal proceedings to be initiated to prevent the continuance of any violations. He shall investigate the cause of all fires which take place within the Borough. If the result of the inquiry satisfies him that the fire was incendiary in origin, he shall report to the Mayor that there are good and sufficient grounds of presumption that the fire was caused by design, and the Mayor shall offer a reward that he deems advisable or that the Council recommends for the discovery and apprehension of the incendiary. The reward shall be paid on the conviction of the offender.
The Chief shall keep a record of all alarms of fire and of all fires which occur within the Borough, indicating the cause, a description of the building or buildings injured or destroyed and the names of their owners or occupants, as nearly as can be ascertained on careful and diligent inquiry.
The assistants, when attending fires, shall obey the direction of the Chief. They shall take proper measures to arrange and use the fire apparatus in the most advantageous manner for the efficient extinguishment of fires. The Chief and assistants shall maintain order while members of the Department are going to, working at or returning from fires and at all other times when they are on duty.
Whenever a fire breaks out in the Borough, it shall be the duty of firefighters to report immediately upon the alarm to their fire company apparatus and accompany the apparatus to the fire unless otherwise directed by the Chief or an assistant. The firefighters shall manage the fire apparatus to the best of their ability and, when the fire is extinguished, shall return the fire apparatus to the engine house upon direction of the Chief or assistant. A person who is not a firefighter but who is present at a fire shall be subject to the orders of the Chief or his assistants or, in their absence, of the Mayor, Milford Borough Fire Liaison and Chair or members of the Fire Department and shall act under their direction in extinguishing the fire, preserving order and removing and protecting property.
The Fire Department may adopt bylaws and regulations for its government, with the advice and consent of the Council, that it deems useful and proper in the discharge of its duties.
Any firefighter guilty of misconduct or neglect of his duties as a firefighter shall be reported by the Chief to the Council and may be dismissed for such misconduct or neglect of duty. All complaints made by residents of the Borough to the Chief, Mayor or Council against firefighters for misconduct or neglect in the performance of their duties shall be reported to the Council for action. Whenever any report is made against a firefighter, a full opportunity for a hearing shall be given to him by the Council, but he may be suspended by the Council until final action on the complaint.
No engine, hose cart, hook and ladder truck or other machine or apparatus of the Fire Department shall be taken outside the limits of the Borough without having first obtained the permission of the Milford Borough Fire Liaison and Chair, except in cases of a fire or other emergency or for purposes of a fire drill.
No expenditures of public moneys shall be made by the Fire Department without obtaining the permission of the Milford Borough Fire Liaison and Chair, except in an emergency.
All firefighters shall obey all municipal ordinances and state laws while operating the engines, machines or other apparatus of the Fire Department.