The Pocantico Hills Fire Department has a long and proud history of serving the community. The first volunteer fire department was the Liberty Hook and Ladder Company, organized on April 28, 1904 with 26 active members. The original fire “station” was in the blacksmith shop located on Bedford Road. The fire alarm was a steel locomotive tire suspended from two upright pieces of metal. When struck by a sledge hammer, the sound carried throughout the hamlet. The ladder “truck” was transported by the firemen by two long ropes. Once the water system was installed, a hose cart was added to the equipment. Eventually, a Ford fire truck was added. For the first 20 years, the department was funded by contributions and through money-raising social events.
In conjunction with the surrounding communities, Pocantico Hills incorporated as a fire district and instituted a fire district tax. On March 26, 1926, Liberty Hook and Ladder Company became Hilltop Engine Company, No. 1. In 1936, the Lyceum Building became the “new” fire house.
As the fire district and concerns over the need of water outside the hamlet grew, the district purchased a Maxim fire truck carrying 650 gallons of water and converted the 1936 Mack into a tank truck carrying 575 gallons of water. The lyceum “firehouse” could only house one of the trucks with the other being located almost a mile from the firehouse. With a need to house both fire truck in the same location, as well as to provide a maintenance area and an area for training, a new firehouse was proposed and approved by the community on August 7, 1968.
Since 1968, the district has continually upgraded its vehicles in an effort to meet the emergency needs of the community. We added an additional Hahn pumper (Engine 190) purchased a series of used tankers (1964 Mack, 1972 White) and a used rescue. We currently operate the following: a pumper (Engine 189), a tanker/pumper (Tanker 12) and a rescue (Rescue 43).
As with all volunteer organizations, membership is an issue. Pocantico Hills needs new members who are willing to serve our community. Any individual over the age of 16 and in good health is welcome to complete an application and join the company. If interested or you would like more information about us, please contact Fire Chief Joe Mahood.
*Information and text was taken from a booklet, “Pocantico Hills” written in 1959.