Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District of Illinois
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Welcome to the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District website
We hope that the information contained here will help you to be safer and to become more knowledgeable in area of fire protection. If you have any questions, please call us at . We look forward to hearing from you.

Meetings are held on the 3rd Monday of every month, beginning at 6:30 pm at the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District Headquarters, 22222 N. Pepper Road, Lake Barrington.

A Timeline of Events


Detailing the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District's ongoing discussions with the village of Barrington to improve service to District residents
(2008 - 2013)

Recent Events:

  • October 2013 - Fire District leaders report that 17 of the 19 firefighter/paramedics being furloughed by the village of Barrington have submitted applications to continue their careers with the BCFPD.

  • October 4, 2013 - The BCFPD and village of Barrington complete the division of all jointly-owned apparatus and equipment.  Both sides express their satisfaction with the results.


NFPA Analysis Reinforces BCFPD's Fire Sprinkler Advocacy Efforts

Automatic sprinkler systems reduce the risk of home fire death by 80%, and can decrease fire-related property damage by up to 70%, according to an analysis conducted by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) officials view the report as validation of their longstanding support for fire sprinklers.

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Trustees Host Regional Conference at
BCFPD Headquarters

Area fire districts discuss options for improving emergency services



The Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) Board of Trustees welcomed more than 40 neighboring fire district representatives to a November 1st conference intended to establish a regional dialogue on improving emergency services.

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District Moves Monthly Meetings
To Upgraded Lake Barrington Headquarters

District Moves Monthly Meetings to Lake Barrington Headquarters

In January, the BCFPD Board of Trustees began holding its monthly meetings at the District's newly upgraded Lake Barrington headquarters, adjacent to Fire Station #3, at 22222 N. Pepper Road.

Meetings take place the third Monday of each month at 6:30 p.m. District residents and members of the public are welcome to attend.

Previous Board meetings were held at the Barrington Public Safety Building, 400 N. Northwest Highway, in Barrington. Trustees voted in November 2012 to move the 2013 meetings to BCFPD headquarters.

For more information, contact the BCFPD at 224-848-4800

Jeffrey A. Swanson, a skilled fire service officerExperienced Fire Service Professional with Proven Record of Administration, Management Success to Lead BCFPD Transition



Jeffrey A. Swanson, a skilled fire service officer with more than 16 years of administration, management and training experience, has been named fire chief/administrator of the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD). He will lead the District's separation from the village of Barrington and final transition to independent operations by year's end and beyond.

Swanson, 43, of New Lenox, IL, was chosen by the BCFPD Board of Trustees from a pool of 10 candidates submitted for consideration by consultants from the Illinois Fire Chiefs Association (IFCA). He will begin his BCFPD service July 18.

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Trustees Sign Staffing Agreement for 33 Firefighter/Paramedics

Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District Trustees formally signed an agreement with Schiller Park-based Paramedic Services of Illinois (PSI) to provide the District with 33 full-time firefighter/paramedics when it begins independent operations on January 1, 2014.

The contract's signing at a September 5 special meeting allows Fire Chief/Administrator Jeff Swanson to begin working with PSI to fully staff the District's Barrington Hills and Lake Barrington fire stations. Trustees also began discussions with PSI on ways to further increase staffing levels with supplemental part-time personnel.

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District Completes Upgrades to Traffic Signal Preemption Devices at 10 Area Intersections

Ten malfunctioning traffic signal preemption devices located at intersections throughout the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) have been upgraded to ensure the safety of firefighters and the residents they serve, the BCFPD Board of Trustees reports.

The sensors, or “opticoms,” help firefighters, paramedics and police officers safely navigate through busy intersections when responding to emergency calls.

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District Secures $10,850 in Grant Funding to Upgrade Lake Barrington Fire Station with Energy-Efficient Lighting

The BCFPD secured nearly $11,000 in grant funding to replace the exterior lighting at its Lake Barrington fire station with energy-efficient lamps that will save the District nearly $3,000 in annual electricity expenses.

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Tanker Training Helps Firefighters Hone Skills

Barrington Countryside firefighters honed their skills during a March training exercise that focused on using water tanker vehicles (tenders) to rapidly deliver water to fire scenes.

The regional exercise, part of a quarterly training program initiated by BCFPD officials, also included firefighters from the Bartlett, East Dundee, Fox River Grove, Nunda Rural, Palatine Rural, and Wauconda Fire Protection Districts.

Board Approves Staffing Increases for Barrington Hills, Lake Barrington Fire Stations

The Board of Trustees of the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) approved a staffing plan at its August 26 meeting that will double the number of on-duty firefighters at the District's two fire stations when it begins independent operations January 1.

The increase in personnel will enable the District to simultaneously respond to multiple calls from each station.

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BCFPD Hires Finance Director/Administrative Assistant With 17 Years of Fire Department, District Experience

Kim Mueller, a financial and administrative professional with 17 years of experience serving area fire departments and districts, has been hired as BCFPD Finance Director/Administrative Assistant.

Mueller, of Woodstock, IL, will work closely with Fire Chief/Administrator Jeffrey A. Swanson to complete the District's pending separation from the village of Barrington at year's end. The BCFPD will begin operating as an independent fire department on January 1, 2014.

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BCFPD Supports Downstate Fire District with Tanker Vehicle


Honoring fire service members' long history of coming to each other's aid, Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) Trustees agreed to provide the Sorento, IL-based Shoal Creek Fire Protection District with a water tanker truck that was removed from front-line service several years ago.

Tender #3668, a 33-year-old, 3,000-gallon capacity water tanker, had been pulled from service due to concerns about road worthiness and operational safety. Shoal Creek officials purchased the tanker for $1 and will perform their own repairs, at considerable cost savings, to upgrade the vehicle.

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Fire District Publishes Public Safety Guide

IT Professional Paul J. Struck Sworn in as BCFPD Trustee

Paul J. Struck, an IT professional and business process consultant who specializes in enterprise resource planning software systems, was sworn in as the newest trustee of the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) at its September 16 meeting.

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Updated Logo

Updated Logo Reflects Commitment to Service Excellence

The updated BCFPD logo and shoulder patch reflect the District's commitment to providing superior fire and emergency medical service to all of its residents, regardless of where they reside: Barrington Hills, Fox River Grove, Hoffman Estates, Inverness, Lake Barrington, North Barrington, South Barrington, or unincorporated Cook, Lake and McHenry Counties.

It features symbols long associated with the fire service: horns representing a call to duty; a helmet signifying safety; and a staff, hook and ladder that represent reaching out for help.

Community Briefing Updates Local Leaders on District Operations

BCFPD Vice President Marvin Hill, Trustee Paul Heinze and Fire Chief/Administrator Jeff Swanson presented a detailed update on the District's pending transition to independent operations during an October 8 executive briefing for local community leaders.

The presentation, held at the District's Lake Barrington Headquarters, 22222 N. Pepper Road, was attended by officials from Barrington Hills, Lake Barrington, South Barrington, Inverness, Barrington Township and Cuba Township.

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Trustees Approve Auto-Aid Agreements with Lake Zurich, Long Grove

Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District Trustees, at their October 21 board meeting, approved new automatic aid agreements with the Lake Zurich Rural Fire Protection District and Long Grove Fire Protection District.

The agreements will take effect on January 1, 2014, when the BCFPD begins independent operations.

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District Inks Automatic Aid Agreement with Fox River Grove

The BCFPD Board of Trustees approved an automatic aid agreement with the Fox River Grove Fire Protection District during a special meeting held Monday, November 4, at the District's Lake Barrington headquarters.

It is the third automatic aid agreement approved in the last two weeks and will take effect January 1, when the District begins independent operations. Agreements with the Lake Zurich Rural Fire Protection District and Long Grove Fire Protection District were approved in October.

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Board of Trustees Approves Three New Automatic Aid Agreements

BCFPD Trustees, at their November 18 meeting, approved three new automatic aid agreements that will take effect January 1, 2014, when the District will complete its separation from the Barrington Fire Department and begin independent operations.

The agreements with the with the Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire Protection District, Carpentersville Fire Department and East Dundee Fire Protection District increases the number of new agreements reached with surrounding departments to seven.

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BCFPD Provides 60+ Free Smoke Detector Batteries to District Residents

Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District officials gave away more than 60 smoke detector batteries during a November 9 public information event that drew attention to how smoke detectors save lives.

Fire Chief/Administrator Jeff Swanson joined BCFPD President Tom Rowan and Secretary Paul Heinze at the Braymore Hills of Inverness subdivision to distribute the free batteries to District residents. Also present was Nick Asta, who will serve as a BCFPD captain in 2014.

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Grid Sign Review Program Ensures BCFPD Provides ‘Fastest, Most Effective’ Service

Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) officials have implemented a public safety review program to ensure that the green numbered signs dotting the District’s 48-square mile landscape continue to help firefighters and paramedics deliver the fastest, most effective emergency services, Assistant Fire Chief Jim Kreher reports.

Grid Sign Review Program Ensures BCFPD Provides Effective Service

Twice per year, the BCFPD will conduct a District-wide inspection to identify locations where signs are damaged or missing, and arrange to have them immediately replaced.

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Independence Day Celebrations Bring Potential for 'Third Degree' Danger

Think sparklers are a "safe" alternative to illegal fireworks? It’s time to rethink that assumption as Independence Day nears.

The tip of a lit sparkler burns at temperatures exceeding 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit – hot enough to cause third degree burns. By comparison, glass melts at 900 degrees and wood burns at 575 degrees.

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Station Tours Help BCFPD Strengthen Bonds with Those It Serves

Fire station tours offered by the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) offer residents and community groups an opportunity to meet the highly-trained professionals who serve them, and gain a “behind-the-scenes” glimpse of life in the fire service, BCFPD Lieutenant Angela Grandgeorge reports.

Picture of Fire Station #2, Barrington Hills

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Fire District Trustees Approve Automatic Aid Agreement with Barrington Fire Department

The BCFPD Board of Trustees, at a special meeting on June 23, unanimously approved an agreement for automatic aid with the Barrington Fire Department.

The agreement, negotiated over the course of several weeks by Fire Chief Jeff Swanson and Barrington Chief James Arie, calls for the Fire District to respond to all commercial fire alarms in the village of Barrington that occur west of Illinois Route 59.

In return, the Barrington Fire Department will provide fire and emergency medical service (EMS) coverage to sections of the District that are in the vicinity of the village’s fire station, located at 400 N. Northwest Highway.

Both departments will continue responding to all structure fires that occur in the District and village, as previously agreed upon.

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Firefighters Present Home Safety Program at St. Mark’s Day School

Three- and four-year-old children at St. Mark’s Day School in Barrington Hills learned important fire safety tips during a June 10 presentation by Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District firefighters.

Firefighter Peter Penkava pose for a group picture with the children

Lieutenant Angela Grandgeorge, and firefighter/paramedics Tom Hamann and Peter Penkava, were joined by their friend – a puppet named Timmy the Turtle – to discuss a range of important topics. These included the dangers of fire, the importance of smoke detectors, and how to safely get out of the house in the event of emergency.

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30-Year Resident Dr. Thomas Long Elected BCFPD President

Trustees elected Thomas C. Long, M.D., to serve as the BCFPD’s 2014-15 President during elections that took place at the Fire Districts’ May 19 meeting.

BCFPD Board Members

Dr. Long succeeds Tom Rowan, who continues his service on the Board of Trustees after three years as BCFPD President.

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Fire Chiefs Report Progress on Proposed Auto-Aid Agreement

BCFPD Fire Chief Jeff Swanson and Barrington Fire Chief James Arie made important progress toward reaching an automatic aid agreement between the two organizations during a May 8 meeting at the Wauconda Fire District’s headquarters.

Effective immediately, both departments have agreed to provide assistance for all structure fires that occur in the District and village of Barrington.

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Firefighters Prepare 3,000-Gallon Tender for Service in Just Two Days

In a striking demonstration of professionalism and commitment to service excellence, Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) firefighters successfully tested and equipped the District’s newest tender for front line service less than 48 hours after the vehicle’s arrival, BCFPD Fire Chief/Administrator Jeffrey A. Swanson reports.

BCFPD firefighters prepare

“Our firefighters did an outstanding job getting this vehicle ready for service so quickly,” he says, noting that it often takes weeks – sometimes up to a month – for a newly-acquired vehicle to enter service.

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Fire District Honors Former Trustee Walter Dalitsch

BCFPD officials welcomed former Trustee Walter W. Dalitsch, DVM, back to the District’s Lake Barrington headquarters in April to honor his 19 years as a member of the Board of Trustees.

Former Trustee Walter Dalitsch

Trustee/Secretary Paul Heinze and Fire Chief/Administrator Jeff Swanson presented Dr. Dalitsch with a framed plaque and service badge to recognize his contributions and commitment to serving District residents.

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Fire District Publishes District Dispatch Newsletter

BCFPD Launches Quarterly 'Dispatch' Newsletter

The first issue of the District Dispatch, a quarterly newsletter published by the BCFPD, is now available.

The new publication is designed to keep residents updated on BCFPD operations and ongoing efforts to improve services.

Click here to view the current issue.

Assistant Chief Donald Wenschhof Brings 24 Years of Fire Service Experience to District

Donald Wenschhof, III, a veteran firefighter/paramedic with nearly a quarter century of experience serving local residents, has joined the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) as Assistant Fire Chief.

Assistant Chief Donald Wenschhof

Assistant Chief Wenschhof reported for duty in late March after spending 24 years with the Barrington Fire Department, where he served as a paid-on-call firefighter, firefighter/paramedic, lieutenant, and assistant chief.

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Rededicated Training Facility Honors John Feit for 35+ Years of District Service

The BCFPD Board of Trustees recognized retired Deputy Fire Chief John J. Feit’s 35-plus years of service to residents by renaming the training facility at the District’s Lake Barrington headquarters in his honor.

Facility Honors John Feit

The Deputy Chief John J. Feit Center will be a place “where excellence is taught, where leaders are developed, and where each of us can rise to be the best-possible version of ourselves,” said BCFPD Trustee/Secretary Paul Heinze at a dedication ceremony held during the Board’s March 17 meeting.

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Pinning Ceremony Honors BCFPD Firefighters, Fire Service Traditions

Surrounded by hundreds of family members, friends, and local leaders, the 70 members of the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District received their official service badges during a March 6 pinning ceremony that embraced the fire service’s rich traditions.

Pinning Ceremony Honors BCFPD Firefighters

The ceremony, held at Station #1 in Lake Barrington, emphasized the BCFPD’s commitment to recognizing the dedication and professionalism of each firefighter, and underscored their commitment to serving District residents.

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Daylight Saving Time Begins March 9; Replace Smoke Detector Batteries

It may not seem possible after one of the worst winters in our history, but spring is just around the corner. Clocks will “spring ahead” one hour on Sunday, March 9, marking the start of Daylight Saving Time for the year.

Besides welcoming the new season’s arrival, BCFPD officials also view the event as an excellent opportunity to ensure the effectiveness of your home’s smoke detectors by replacing their batteries when you reset your clocks.

It takes just a few minutes and will greatly improve your overall safety. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), two-thirds of home fire deaths occur in residences with no working smoke detectors.

The BCFPD recommends that residents replace smoke detector batteries twice per year and test smoke alarms once per month, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

It could mean the difference between life and death.

For more information on home fire safety, contact the BCFPD at 224-848-4800.

Board Approves Innovative Plan to Upgrade Emergency Vehicle Fleet, Save Taxpayers $150,000

The BCFPD Board of Trustees in February authorized an innovative apparatus upgrade program that will allow the Fire District to procure two frontline emergency vehicles for less than the cost of a single new fire engine, saving taxpayers almost $150,000.

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Green Grid Signs Speed Delivery of District’s Fire & EMS Services

The green numbered signs dotting the BCFPD landscape serve an important role in the delivery of fire and emergency medical services: they act as beacons to help firefighters and paramedics rapidly reach residents in need.

Green Grid Signs Speed Delivery of Services

The signs – familiar landmarks to area residents – allow firefighters to accurately identify home locations throughout the BCFPD, where addresses are based on postal rural route numbers. As a result, house numbers are out of sequence in many areas.

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Free Smoke Detector Battery Exchange Program Established for District Residents

A new public safety program offered by the BCFPD allows residents to receive free batteries for their homes’ smoke detectors when they drop off old batteries at District fire stations, Lieutenant Angela Grandgeorge reports.

Smoke Detector Exchange

Residents may bring old smoke detector batteries to the District’s Lake Barrington station, 22222 N. Pepper Road, or its Barrington Hills station, 120 W. Algonquin Road, to take advantage of the program.

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Board of Trustees Authorizes New Fire Engine Purchase

The BCFPD Board of Trustees, at its January 20 meeting, authorized $425,000 for the purchase of a new fire engine that will improve firefighters’ ability to protect District residents.

The purchase is the next step of a long-planned effort to upgrade the District’s fleet of emergency vehicles without raising taxes on residents.

BCFPD Fire Chief/Administrator Jeff Swanson says that the capabilities of the new engine, which will be delivered to the BCFPD this fall, will help the District provide the highest levels of service to its residents.

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Invocation Helps BCFPD Commemorate New Beginning

Chaplain Gerry Schalk, of the Fox River Grove Fire Protection District, helped the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District usher in a new era of service to the community with a New Year’s Day invocation steeped in fire service tradition.

BCFPD firefighters at the New Years invocation

The invocation – held during the area’s worst New Year’s snow storm in 15 years – helped mark a new beginning for the BCFPD, which began operating as an independent public safety organization just hours earlier. It was attended by BCFPD officers and firefighters, trustees and area residents.

BCFPD firefighters at the New Years invocation

Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District To Assist Village of Barrington through Mutual Aid

The Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD) stands ready to assist the village of Barrington whenever possible through the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) but will no longer pursue an automatic aid agreement with the village, BCFPD leaders report.

When negotiations hit a stalemate and a village representative stated it appeared an auto aid agreement was not going to happen, the District felt it needed to pursue other agreements in order to protect its residents – which it did.

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Fire District Publishes Public Safety Guide

4th Quarter Public Safety Guide Now Available

The BCFPD's Public Safety Guide is designed to help residents learn more about ways to keep their families safer.

Click here to view the current issue.

For past issues, click here.

Long-Time District Resident Named BCFPD Battalion Chiefs

Former Barrington Fire Department Lieutenants, Long-Time District Resident Named BCFPD Battalion Chiefs

Two Barrington Fire Department lieutenants and a former Des Plaines deputy fire chief have been hired as Battalion Chiefs for the Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District (BCFPD).

Ron Eilken, Scott Motisi and Jeff Tress bring a combined 59 years of fire service experience to the District. As shift commanders, each will oversee one of the BCFPD's three 24-hour shifts when the District begins independent operations on January 1.

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Serving: Barrington Hills, South Barrington, Lake Barrington, Inverness, Unincorporated Lake County, Village of Barrington, Surrounding Barrington Area of Illinois