Westlake Town Council called an emergency meeting last week and approved a budget amendment to free up to $200,000 to replace the fire station, which was severely damaged by a fire last month.
Westlake firefighters left the station, 2900 Dove Road, on the evening of Dec. 31 to respond to a car wreck on Texas 114. When they returned about 45 minutes later, their station was on fire, said Fire Chief David Whitten.
Other nearby fire departments were called to help put it out. Fire investigators believe the fire was an accident; the firefighters were eating dinner when the call about the wreck came, and while the stove burners were turned off, the department believes they weren’t cool yet and a hand towel or something else flammable was too close to the stove and caught fire..
The station – a modular home – had blanketed insurance coverage, according to town officials. The town is waiting for the insurance company to evaluate the damage and process a reimbursement. Until then, the town is trying to set up a temporary living quarters at the station.
The firefighters were staying at a nearby Southlake fire station. Though farther away, there’s been "no significant changes" in response time, Whitten said at the meeting on Thursday night, pointing out that the Southlake Station #3, 100 East Dove Road, is close to Texas 114, which helps them reach destinations quickly.
The plan, under the motion the council passed Thursday, is to set up a Recreational Vehicle at the Westlake Fire Station soon, then get a modular home to replace the damaged one.
All proceeds from the insurance claim will be used to reduce the $200,000 expenditure from the general fund, which will only be used to pay for what the insurance reimbursement doesn’t cover.
Mark David Smith, 817-390-7808