Virginia Beach, Va. (WTKR) - An agreement between Chesapeake, Virginia Beach and Norfolk to automatically respond to fire calls in the border regions of those cities seems to be working well.
The Tri-City Automatic Aid agreement went into effect in May.
Under the agreement, response to neighborhoods where two city borders connect within a seven-minute automatic aid zone is enhanced.
Automatic Aid sends supplemental assistance from a neighboring city upon initial dispatch.
"It's worked really, really well, from dispatch to arrival to response," Captain William Murray with the Virginia Beach Fire Department told NewsChannel 3's Todd Corillo Tuesday.
In the span of three months, from May to July, Virginia Beach Firefighters have responded to 14 calls for mutual aid: four in Norfolk and 10 in Chesapeake.
They've also received assistance from Norfolk and Chesapeake during 39 fires.
During two working fires, automatic aid provided critical water supply as well as primary searches.
"Getting the closest truck to the incident with the right amount of people is really what we are here for. Whether the truck shows up and it says Virginia Beach or Chesapeake, service delivery is really what we aim for," Captain Murray commented.
The automatic aid can also cut critical time during a fire response.
"Statistically they show that a fire doubles in size every minute, so getting the proper people and resources there as quickly as you can is paramount."