LOGAN, Utah. The Cash Valley Fire Department struggled to find a new location after realizing that their building would not withstand an earthquake like the one that struck Magna last year.
One of Logan’s fire stations has been around since the early 70s, when the US began implementing the seismic code nationwide.
Fire chief Brad Hannig said their station was probably not one of the buildings that were “trendsetters” when it came to enforcing the code.
In the early 2000s, according to Hannig, the plant underwent a seismic upgrade to a “life-saving” level.
“We were told that we would leave with injury, but after the earthquake the station would not be usable,” Hannig said.
Reinforcement is patched in the ceiling, and the support pillars are covered with fiberglass.
Support plates are installed in the basement.
“If this wall comes down, it won’t help us,” Hannig said. “It was a patch and an attempt to make a difference.”
Hannig said that for the past 18 months, they have been working to find a new location, rather than continuing to put plasters on their station.
“We’re in the second business,” Hannig said. “When you move the fire station, you change the reaction time.”
That’s why Hannig looked at the city-owned parking lot next door.
“It seemed less efficient from a taxpayer’s point of view,” Hannig said.
One of the plans for the new fire station is to keep the old building while they build a new one at the other end of the parking lot, but the business owners said they would have 40 fewer stalls forever.
Jason Holmes relies on parking and said he was not sure his business would stay afloat.
“Who wants to come to level ground if you can’t park?” – said Holmes.
Across the street, Sarah Coulson is a co-owner of a spa that uses the parking lot to access her business.
“Nobody wants them in our backyard, but they are already in our backyard,” Coulson said. “If they go there, they’ll be in our kitchen.”
Coulson launched a petition that garnered over 500 signatures.
“This parking lot is used a lot and many companies rely on it,” Coulson said.
Hannig hopes to find a compromise that will benefit both and save the lives of his team and those they are saving.
“The station has been half a block from this location for over 100 years,” Hannig said.
FOX 13 reached out to Logan Mayor Holly Danes, who was unavailable for comment.