By Sue Moore
The Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office, the South Kalamazoo County Fire Authority (SKCFA) and the Village of Schoolcraft administration held a ribbon cutting ceremony in late October at the site of the newly installed Fire Signal Tower antenna on the Schoolcraft water tower.
Pictured above in the front row are Randy Smith, chair of the authority; Cheri Lutz, Schoolcraft village manager; Keith Gunnett, Schoolcraft village president; Richard Fuller, sheriff; Bryan Campbell, Schoolcraft police chief. The new fire tower was placed on top of the highest structure in the village, the water tower located on Lee Street, just south of E. Eliza Street.
This project began in the spring of 2016, when it was discovered that the signal to alert firefighters of an emergency call had very poor reception in the Schoolcraft area. The signal from the nearest existing signal tower, in Adams Park near Indian Lake, was degrading; its signal was too weak to reach the south County firefighters who lived and responded from the Schoolcraft area. Sheriff Richard Fuller obtained funding to add a fire signal tower in the area. With the cooperation and approval of the Schoolcraft Village Council, the antenna was erected on top of the Schoolcraft Village water tower.
When construction started, it was determined that the signal quality could be upgraded for greater reliance at which time the South Kalamazoo County Fire Authority contributed funding. This project represents a significant improvement in emergency and fire notification to first responders in the South County area, Sheriff Fuller said.