Section II-9

Emergency and Non-Emergency Response

Purpose:  To establish distinguished differences when responding to emergency type calls and non-emergency calls.

Scope:   These guidelines are to be adhered to by all Three Star Fire Department personnel when responding to emergency calls.  It is important to distinguish true emergencies from calls for assistance.  Calls for assistance will not warrant lights and siren, excess speed, or priority over actual emergencies.  It will be at the discretion of senior person responding to drop responding personnel to “routine” status to help alleviate possible dangers of responding in emergency modes.


Emergency:  When life threatening, property loss, or environmental conditions exists that warrants an expeditious arrival of emergency personnel.  Personnel and apparatus responding shall operate with lights and sirens, respond with quickest route available, under safe conditions, with due regard to state laws, road conditions, and other vehicles.  A safe arrival is paramount.  Under no circumstances will responding personnel operate in emergency mode for the purpose of guaranteeing a seat on responding apparatus.

Non-Emergency:  No life threatening conditions exists, nor is there any condition in which property will be damaged if Three Star Fire Department does not arrive within minutes.  This condition is considered routine and lights and sirens will be secured and all traffic laws adhered to.


In most cases, common sense and experience will dictate the mode in which Three Star Fire Department personnel shall respond to each tone.  If any doubt exists, emergency mode will be exercised.

  1. All dispatches will be treated as emergencies unless Tipton County Central Dispatch announces that call shall be responded to as routine. Even then, it is merely a suggestion.
  1. If situation dictates, senior person responding shall order all personnel responding to “respond routine” to the fire station and all fire apparatus will respond routine.
  1. Examples of Non-Emergency calls for assistance include, but not limited to:
    1. Calls for assistance with pets, snakes, or other animal type calls (this does not include bites).
    2. Lift assists
    3. Assistance to check vital signs
    4. Not feeling well (only if person has not felt well for days).
    5. Reports of experiencing pains (provided pains are not trauma related).
  1. Examples of Emergency calls include, but are not limited to:
    1. Structure Fires (Confirmed or alarm)
    2. EMS calls with cardiac arrest, respiratory failure/distress
    3. Trauma
    4. Motor Vehicle Collisions with injuries