The career division of the North Wildwood Fire Department was established with part-paid driver/operators, or “housemen” in the mid 1920’s. One Firefighter was on duty in each of the city’s two firehouses. Their jobs included not only extinguishing fires, but operating what was then considered modern day apparatus. They also took great care of the stations and some of them actually lived in them around the clock. One of the two firehouses was located at 18th & New Jersey Ave’s, which was since been converted into a restaurant. The other station was located at 3rd & Central Aves in what was known as the Anglesea section of the city at that time. That building was a 3-story structure that also housed some city hall offices. A fire destroyed the top floor and eventually became a 2 story building containing only the fire department.
The department continued to respond out of the 18th Ave. house until 1927 when a new station was erected at 15th & Central Aves. This station, along with the 3rd Ave station, was shared by both the paid and volunteer firefighters.
In 1943, the members of the department applied for and were accepted into the New Jersey State Firemen’s Benevolent Association and became North Wildwood FMBA Local 56. In 1945, elected officials established a paid fire department by city ordinance.
In 1971, a new station was constructed for the Anglesea members at 2nd & New Jersey Aves. This lot was donated to the firemen by the ladies auxiliary so that they could build this station. The 3rd Ave house was simply too small for the newer apparatus that was being built. Firefighters continued responding out of this new station up until 1994, when it was decided that it was much safer for two firefighters to work and respond together, plus the city had envisioned to add a new entity to the department in the near future.
Firefighters were then combined into the 15th street station with two on duty until August of 1995 when that vision by the city had become reality. The fire department took on the responsibility of providing emergency medical services, and now responded to all medical incidents, further housing two ambulances in addition to their Engine. All career and part time firefighters as well as officers are now EMT certified. From approximately the 1940’s through the 1960’s, the fire department did provide ambulance service with one firefighter, sometimes two, driving it to incidents, and picking up the sick and injured, but unable to provide the level of care that we do today. That was only due to the lack of knowledge and training on the state level, we are sure that these firefighter’s took the necessary care for those patients the best they knew how, with the same energy and enthusiasm as they took in fighting a fire. It was then taken over by a newly formed volunteer rescue squad in the early 1970’s, and provided service through the early 1990’s. Now, as many as 7 firefighters man three pieces of equipment at the height of the summer season and provide protection to its residents and summer vacationers. In a sense, the department has come full circle.
The current career division moved into a new station that was constructed for their use as well as the city’s Office of Emergency Management on November 30, 2000. The land it is built on was the former rescue squad building site. The department currently works a 4 platoon system (two 10-hour day shifts followed by two 14-hour night shifts) year round. There are currently 14 career Firefighter/EMT's who operate and staff Quint 2 and the ambulance's 24/7/365 with an average on location time of under 3 minutes.
The department placed into service a 2003 E-One Quint purchased by the city with the aid of a federal grant. This Quint replaces a 1978 American La France Century Pumper that the career division used for over 25 years.