Fire Department History

The Puslinch Fire Department is an organization that has been around since 1968. Made up of dedicated volunteers, the Fire Department has always played a major role in ensuring the safety of Township residents. Read about the roots of this important organization below.

Early years – 1968

In 1968, the Reeve and Council for the Township of Puslinch started the process of forming a fire department. A fire Chief was chosen and ads were put in the papers for volunteers to sign up.  The first fire Chief was Bob Hilborn who operated a service garage on the corner of Brock Rd N and Wellington Rd 34 (Aberfoyle Rd).

Training for the eager volunteers started in September 1968 and after four months of training, they were ready to take over fire protection for Puslinch on January 1, 1969.

The first unit purchased as a fire truck was a used gasoline delivery truck, converted so that water would flow from all compartments to a manifold at the rear of the truck.  Portable pumps were used to move water to and from the tank.

Our first “real” fire truck in Puslinch was pumper 30, which was purchased from Hamilton and used there as a training unit.  This was a 1951 Hickey pumper mounted on a Ford chassis, with a 625 gal per min pump. This unit could still be used today to pump water but is used mostly for Christmas parades, conventions, and other social events.

A red 1951 Hickey pumper fire truck on a grassy lawn

Not long after, it was determined that another unit was necessary to carry all the extra equipment that a fire department needs.  This unit was a used 1959 IH cube van with a slant 4 engine. This unit was completely stripped down by the firefighters, repaired, shelves were installed, and it was painted a bright red.

New trucks and the appointment of a new Chief- 1972

In 1972, the first new pumper truck was purchased.  This was a cab over Ford with a 534 engine, 625 gpm pump and 600 gal water tank.  At this time, we were ready to attack any fire.  This unit was sold at an auction in September 2005.

In 1974, another new cab over Ford with a 534 gas engine was purchased to replace the original converted gas truck.  A 1500 gal tank was installed on this unit to carry water to a fire emergency.  It now has a 1200 gal water tank and is still in use today at a local gravel pit to control dust on their roadways.

An old building on Brock Rd S served as the first fire hall, giving the Fire Department room for two trucks.  An addition with a basement was erected at the rear of the old building.  This made room for two more units, a radio room, a class room downstairs, a shower, a washroom, and an office for the Chief.

In 1981, a new municipal complex was built on Wellington Rd 34 just west of Brock Rd S.  The fire department, roads department, and municipal offices were all housed in the same complex.  

The second fire Chief to take over was A. G. Slade from Morriston.

In 1986 a new IH diesel, 840 gpm pumper was purchased.  This unit is pumper 32 and is our second response pumper.  It has serviced the Township very well and is looking forward to an easier life in the back row at the fire hall.In 1992, a new telesquirt 50 was added to the fleet.  The chassis is an IH diesel, 1050 gpm pump and the body was manufactured by Superior.

A yellow telesquirt 50 firetruck parked in front of a garage

New Fire and Deputy Chief and a new unit – 1995

In 1995 Douglas C. Smith took over as Chief after the death of A. G. Slade.  Robert Gordon was chosen as the new Deputy Chief.

A new rescue unit was put into service on May 23, 2000. It was a 5 person cab Freightliner FL 80 with the rescue equipment, extrication equipment, and absorbent for spills.

In 2002 an addition was added to the fire hall to give us more office space for the fire Chief, training officers, fire prevention, and storage.

Defibrillator programs – 2003

In 2003, a defibrillator program was started with the purchase of two units.  A third unit was provided by a resident of Puslinch and as of April 2004, we had another one donated by a resident.  More than thirty members have received training in defibrillator usage and are certified to use them when necessary.

On November 3, 2004, our new American Lafrance (HUB) pumper arrived.  It pumps 1050 gal per min and carries 1000 gallons of water.  It also features a five person cab with SCBA in four of the seats, a Foam Pro proportioner and a hydraulic ladder/suction hose mounting system.

A side view of an American Lafrance (HUB) pumper fire truck on a leafy road

Dan Quinnell as Fire Chief and a new tanker- 2005

On December 31, 2005, Chief D. C. Smith retired and on January 1 2006, Dan R. Quinnell took over as Fire Chief.

On March 17, 2007, a new tanker was delivered to Puslinch.  It was manufactured by American Lafrance and carries 3000 US gal. of water.  It has dump ports on three sides and has a pto pump.

Robert Gordon as Fire Chief – 2008

On December 17, 2008,  Robert Gordon became Fire Chief.

New Deputy Chief and new tanker – 2009

On September 21 2009, Steven Goode started as Deputy Chief.

In January, 2011, our new E ONE suction tanker was put into service.  It is 3000 gal US and will be of great assistance at fires.

In December 2012, a new mini FORD pumper arrived to replace our 1986 pumper 32.  This one carries 900 L of water, jaws, and medical supplies.  It also has a foam tank and 4000 lpm pump.

Steven Goode as Fire Chief – 2014

In January 2014, 7 firefighter recruits and 4 auxiliaries are hired to replace retiring members.

A retirement celebration was held for Chief Robert Gordon and Firefighter Donald Stewart for 45 years of service!

On March 01, 2014, Steven Goode became Fire Chief.In 2014, Puslinch Fire and Rescue Service embarks on a Master Fire Plan .This Master Fire Plan will be a measure and guide to changes, improvements, and services provided by Puslinch Fire and Rescue Services in the years to come.

Luis Gomes as Deputy Fire Chief – 2016 and as Fire Chief – 2017 to 2021

In 2016, Puslinch Fire and Rescue Service purchased a replacement Aerial truck that has a 75’ ladder and seating for 6 firefighters.

Since 2017, Puslinch Fire and Rescue Service has hired 18 new staff members to replace vacant positions and presently is at full compliment.

On September 22nd 2018, Puslinch Fire and Rescue Service celebrated its 50th Anniversary with formal presentations and a fun filled day with friends, family, residents and dignitaries. 

Brad Bigrigg as Interim Fire Chief 2021 to present

On August 11, 2021, Brad Bigrigg started as Interim Fire Chief.

Puslinch Fire Trucks