LONDON KY—The London Fire Department (LFD) has hired five full-time Firefighters, equipping each 24-hour shift with four on-duty at any given time. The new full-time hires include David King, Jacob Floyd, Jason Robinson, Kyle Fowler, and Makenzie Jackson.

“Having four on-shift means better fire protection for the City of London, allowing the first truck to have two in and two out within a matter of seconds. There always is safety in numbers,” London Fire Chief Carl Hacker said.

The LFD is a combination department made up of 17 volunteers, 9 support members, and paid staff. Currently, the department has 15 full-time firefighters, one administrative staff member, and five part-time firefighters.

David King began his career at the London Fire Department in 1994 as a volunteer and worked at Ambulance Inc. of Laurel County from 1998 to 2020. King is a Kentucky Fire Instructor, EMS Instructor, American Heart Association CPR/BLS Instructor, and has an Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT) License. His certifications include the Candidate Physical Ability Test Certification and Firefighter 1 and 2 (150 hours and 400 hours).

“I started my career here and it’s where I want to end my career. I’m excited to use all the knowledge and experience I’ve obtained in all my years and apply it for the betterment and growth of the LFD,” King said, adding, “I want the London community to know that I will give 100 percent effort to protect lives and their property.”

Jacob Floyd served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 2005 to 2009 as an Infantryman and completed two tours in Iraq. He’s a certified L-2 CrossFit Instructor and has owned the local gym, CrossFit HardCharger, for five-and-a-half years. In 2020, he began serving as a London Fire Department Volunteer, has a Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT), and is currently on his pathway towards receiving his Firefighter 1 Certification. He has his Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology with a minor in Agriculture.

“This is the best Fire Department around and I’m looking forward to serving our community. It’s a dream come true,” Floyd said.

Jason Robinson served in the Kentucky National Guard from 2007 to 2014, began his firefighting career as a volunteer firefighter at Oneida Fire Department, Manchester Fire Department, and Hacker Fire Department. Robinson’s certifications include Firefighter 1 and 2, CPAT, Hazmat Awareness and Operations, Rope Rescue Awareness and Ops, and Swiftwater Awareness and Ops.

“I’m most excited about being a part of a great team of members and to serve the community with dedication and pride,” Robinson said.

Kyle Fowler began serving as a firefighter for four years in Cashiers, North Carolina at Glenville Volunteer Fire Department and served 12 years at East Bernstadt Fire and Rescue. Fowler’s certifications include Firefighter 1, CPAT, Hazmat Operations, Arson 1, and AED.

“To me, this is the best job in the world and being able to be blessed with this job and also in the town I call home is just a feeling I cannot describe,” Fowler said.

Makenzie Jackson began serving as a London Fire Department Volunteer in April of 2018 and was hired part-time in 2019. Jackson’s certifications include Firefighter 1 and 2, CPAT, Level 1 Fire Prevention Inspector, Rope Technician, Swift Water Awareness, and National Incident Management System 100, 200, 700, and 800.

“I’m making history as the first female firefighter for the City of London, and I’d like to show younger generations that if they work hard and have determination, they can truly accomplish anything,” Jackson said, adding, “I never gave up on my dream and continue to put in the work to achieve my career goals.”

Now through 2022 London Firefighters will all be working towards the goal of receiving their International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC) 1 and 2 Certification as well as their EMT License.

“I have been with the department for 35 years and the department has changed a lot from what it was when I started. Since I became Chief, I’ve tried to make sure that we are moving forward every day within our training, our equipment, and utilizing technology to improve our effectiveness and productivity,” Hacker said.

Improvements have included thermal imaging cameras for all firefighters on-duty to allow them to navigate through smoke quicker and be able to locate those in danger. The Department is now providing a junior firefighter program in two Laurel County Schools, free smoke detectors to London residents, pre-planning all London businesses, spearheading the London Fire Honor Guard, and has moved towards going 95 percent paperless Department-wide by utilizing cloud-based efficient technology.

“We have only just begun with changes that will make us a better department for the future,” Hacker added.

The LFD is continuing to take applications to fill future positions as the City of London looks towards the future for potential expansion. Applications are available online at https://londonkyfire.com/join as well as requirement details for employment.