By Ed Brock
Standing in Eang Moong's front yard on Pine View Terrace the rooftop of Clayton County Fire Department's Station No. 4 is visible through some trees.
It's a welcome sight, Moong said, even if he's also close enough to hear the sirens every time the 30 firefighters, paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians stationed there respond to an emergency.
"It's no problem," Moong said. "They're going to help somebody."
Clayton County residents like Moong will have the opportunity to check out the new station at 1034 East Fayetteville Road in Riverdale during an open house today from 3 to 6 p.m. And later this month two other new stations are scheduled to be opened, Station No. 9 on Old Dixie Road and Station No. 12 on Mundy's Mill Road.
It's been more than 10 years since there's been a new fire station in Clayton County, Fire Chief Alex Cohilas said in a statement, and these new stations will provide quicker response times.
"These new facilities are environmentally safe, technologically advanced and state of the art. They are simply the finest fire stations in the state of Georgia, if not the entire nation," Cohilas said. "The citizens of Clayton County have much to be proud of. These fine facilities will house the best equipped and finest trained firefighter the state of Georgia has to offer."
Stations No. 4 and No. 9 are replacing existing stations while Station No. 12 is brand new for its area. The original Station No. 4 was built in 1967 and is just down East Fayetteville Road from the new station. Station No. 9 was acquired from the now defunct Mountain View Fire Department and is also well past its prime.
The construction of Station No. 12 on Mundy's Mill near Fitzgerald Road is particularly important to provide coverage for the rapidly developing south end of the county. It's presence will be comforting for 17-year-old Joey Demond who lives on nearby Holly Hill Way.
"If my house catches on fire I know they're right there," Demond said.
The new station could mean lower homeowners insurance rates as well.
"We're hoping it will," said Wendy McNamee, also of Holly Hill. "I do hope it won't be too noisy, though."
McNamee, a retired Clayton County Schools employee, said she, too, is pleased to have fire protection services so close at hand.
"Not only fire, but to have medical rescue people so closeby," said McNamee, adding that her 94-year-old father is living with her.
Each station costs a little more than $880,000, Cohilas said previously. Two will have the same floor plan while the third will be a mirror image, and each one has room for future expansion.
The stations were built by Raddick Construction of Thomaston.