Berks County Fire Services Working Group

Mission Statement

It is the mission of the Berks County Fire Service Working Group to accurately and effectively represent the views and needs of all the fire and rescue organizations throughout Berks County to the Berks County Department of Emergency Services; and to bring forth recommendations regarding representation, projects, policies and guidelines in support of improvements to the operation of the Berks County fire service.  In this role, the Berks County Fire Service Working Group serves to improve the overall level of communication between and among all Berks County Fire Service organizations, the Berks County Department of Emergency Services, and bodies representative of other emergency services disciplines in Berks County.

About Us

The Berks County Fire Services Working Group first met in March of 2005.  This group represents the interests of Berks County's fire departments on issues of a countywide nature.

The group was formed at the request of the Berks County Fire Chief's Association (BCFA) during their November 2004 meeting.  Declining membership, and the distancing of active members from day to day operations in their fire departments created a situation in which the BCFCA was unable to represent the needs of the fire service to county agencies.  BCFA requested that Berks County Emergency Management solicit input from each of the fire zones in the county to better find this representation.

The current committee consists of two members from each county fire zone.  Meetings are held as needed and are called by the committee chairperson.  Members provide reports to their respective zone and solicit input from the zone companies on issues of importance.  In cases where no active zone exists, the members share information by direct contact with zone fire chiefs.  Members of this group represent the interests of the Berks County Fire Service on the regional fire/rescue committee of the East Central PA Regional Task Force.

Current Committee Members




Chris Stevens Chairperson Zone 5 & 6
Ron Wentzel Vice Chair Zone 7 & East Central Task Force
Eric Schrack Vice Chair Alt. Zone 2
Matt Gehman Secretary Zone 5 & 6
Matt Brett Member Zone 1
J. David Bossard Alternate Berks County Fire Police
Bob Englebach Member Berks County Fire Police
Lester Feick Member Zone 3
Tony Flores Member Berks County DES
Eric Fox Member Zone 5 & 6
Brian Gottschall Member Berks County DES
Leon Grim Member Berks County Firemen's Assn.
Corey Houser Member Zone 3
Ethan Kunkel Member Zone 1
Scot Landis Member Zone 4 & East Central Task Force
Bruce Longenecker Member Zone 4
Bob Martin Member Zone 3
Ken Quell Alternate Zone 2
Tom Rehr Member Zone 7
Stephen Serba Member Zone 7
Chris Schaeffer Member Zone 5 & 6
Bob Snyder Member Fire Training Committee
Chuck Snyder Member Zone 2
Craig Wanner Member Berks County DES
Roger Weidenheimer Member Berks County Firemen's Assn.
Scott Yenser Alternate Zone 1

Current & Future Projects

- Progress in a NIMS compliant county-wide incident management system that will ensure that each company is operating in concert with its municiaplity's emergency operations plan and current federal requirements.  This project includes establishing standards for apparatus designators.

- Assistance in the deployment os a task force-wide accountability, identification, and resource management system that will be made available to every response organization in Berks County.

- Interfacing with the Berks County Communications Center on issues concerning the deployment of a new computer aided dispatch (CAD) system.

Past Projects

- Securing of funding to expand 33.68 & 33.80 to county-wide coverage on all major towers.  (FUNDING COMMITTED - TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES WITH PROJECT BEING ADDRESSED BY BERKS COUNTY DES).

- Securing of funding to implement a field mass decontamination team in Berks County. (PROJECT COMPLETED - MASS DECONTAMINATION RESOURCES DEPLOYED TO EXETER TOWNSHIP FIRE DEPARTMENT).


Previous Meeting Minutes







January January January January January
February February February February February
March March March March March
April April April April April
May May May May May
June June June June June
July July* July July July
August August August August August
September September September September September
October October October* October October*
November November  November* November* November*
December December* December December December

 * = No Meeting Held or Minutes Not Available