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Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and Norfolk train for automatic fire aid plan

Posted at 5:41 PM, Feb 13, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-13 17:41:55-05

Virginia Beach, Va. (WTKR) - Firefighters from Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Chesapeake joined forces Friday to train for the implementation of Tri-City Automatic Aid.

Under the plan, response to neighborhoods where two city borders connect within a seven-minute automatic aid zone would be enhanced through automatic dispatching.

"Essentially what we are doing is erasing the city boundary lines between the three cities. What that’s going to do is make sure the citizens of all three cities have better protection, they are going to get the closet engine to their residence regardless of city lines," Chesapeake Fire Chief Ed Elliot told NewsChannel 3's Todd Corillo Friday.

"Virginia Beach might be send a couple of units from a little bit further away and we are lucky enough to have a Norfolk or Chesapeake Fire station in the same proximity – why not get them there a few minutes quicker," explained Virginia Beach Fire District Chief Vance Cooper.

Helmet Cam: Watch firefighters train in burning Virginia Beach building. 

Friday's training was designed to bring together crews from all three cities.

"We are trying to get the crews to work together that are going to be working together. These are actual crews that will be responding along those border areas," said Norfolk Assistant Chief Mark McCoy.

Training will continue next week for all three departments, with the goal of implementing the automatic aid agreement later this year.

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Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and Norfolk working on automatic fire aid plan