LOGAN, Utah — A Cache Valley fire department has been struggling to find a new location after realizing their building would not make it through an earthquake like the one that hit Magna last year.
One of the Logan Fire stations has been around since the early 70s, a time when the U.S. began implementing seismic code throughout the country.
Fire Chief Brad Hannig said their station likely wasn’t one of the buildings that were a “trendsetter” when it came to following the code.
In the early 2000s, Hannig said the station underwent a seismic upgrade to a “life-saving” level.
“We were told we would get out with injury but that the station would not be able to be occupied after an earthquake,” said Hannig.
Reinforcements were patched in the ceiling and fiberglass has been plastered on the supporting pillars.
In the basement, there are supportive plaques in place.
“If this wall felled, it wouldn’t help us much,” said Hannig. “It was a band-aid and an effort to make a difference.”
Hannig said they’ve been working the past 18 months to find a new place altogether, rather than continue placing band-aids on their station.
“We’re in the business of seconds,” said Hannig. “When you move a fire station, you change response times.”
That’s why Hannig looked to the city-owned parking lot next door.
“It seemed less impactful from a taxpayer standpoint,” said Hannig.
One of the plans for the new fire department is to keep the old building while they build the new one on the other end of the parking lot, but business owners said that leaves them with 40 fewer stalls, permanently.
Jason Holmes relies on the parking lot and said he’s not sure if his business will stay afloat.
“Who would want to come to an even venue if you can’t park?” said Holmes.
Across the street, Sarah Coulson co-owns a spa that relies on the parking lot for access to her business.
“No one wants them in our backyard, but they’re already in our backyard,” said Coulson. “If they do go there, they’re going to be in our kitchen.”
Coulson started a petition that has more than 500 signatures.
“That parking lot is used so much and so many businesses rely on it,” said Coulson.
Hannig hopes to find a compromise that can benefit both and save the lives of his crew and the ones they rescue.
“The station has been located half a block from this location for more than 100 years,” said Hannig.
FOX 13 reached out to Logan City Mayor Holly Daines who was unavailable for comment.