The Squad was organized in 1951 by a group of township residents whose concern was to provide ambulance services to the residents of Pequannock Township. Prior to that time, the Pompton Lakes-Riverdale First Aid Squad covered this area. The Squad building was originally located on Route 23, where Rentals Unlimited is now situated. The original structure still stands there. The First Reformed Church of Pompton Plains leased a tract of land adjacent to where the original Chilton Hospital stood, to the Township of Pequannock, and the township sub-leases the land to the First Aid Squad. The building that stands here now was built in 1958 and dedicated in 1959. The First Reformed Church of Pompton Plains was our original mortgage holder. The building has since been paid off.
Our current home originally housed two ambulances which exited out of the side of the building. In order to hold squad meetings, the ambulances had to be pulled out of the building, which was a basic four wall structure. In 1968, the building was expanded. New ambulance bays were added and the old bays were converted into what is now the meeting room, kitchen and bathrooms. The ambulance bays, with four entrances, three to the front and one to the rear, housed three ambulances and a rescue truck. The ambulance bays were recently renovated. The ambulance bay now has four entrances, two to the front and two to the rear, as well as adding a second floor that has a crew lounge area with restroom facilities.
The Squad provides emergency medical services and transportations in its' coverage area, which includes Pequannock Township, small portions of Kinnelon that are readily accessible from Jacksonville Road, and a small portion of Riverdale on Harrison Road. Additionally, the Squad responds with the Fire Departments to stand by on all structure fires. The Squad also engages in other activities consistent with its' mission. These activities include sponsoring First Aid and CPR classes for the general public, putting on demonstrations and lectures for schools and civic groups, and providing free loans of recuperative equipment such as crutches, walkers, and wheelchairs. The Squad is always interested in spreading its fundamental values of giving back to the community.
The Squad is not an agency of the Township government, but rather an independent, not-for-profit corporation with a constitution and by-laws. As such, the Squad operates under the direction of a three-member Board of Trustees. The overall and final authority of the Squad rests with these trustees. One is a Squad member, one is a citizen at large from the town, and one is a member of the Township Council. The Squad Trustee and the Citizen Trustee are elected by the Squad for a three year period.
The Squad has two types of officers, administrative and operational officers. The administrative officers consist of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, Recording Secretary and Corresponding Secretary. The operational officers consist of a Chief, Captain, and Lieutenant. Each officer is elected by the membership of the Squad for a one-year term and may serve as many as two years consecutively, with the exception of the Treasurer who may serve an unlimited term.
The primary classes of membership are active, exempt, active-exempt, probationary, ambulance assistant, cadet, and associate. There are also several classes of honorary membership and special membership, including physician and clergy. All members, seniors as well as cadets, join as probationary members. The probationary period exists to allow new members to familiarize themselves with the operation of the Squad and with other Squad members. For an adult member, the probationary period generally lasts six months. When an adult member completes the probationary period, he or she becomes an active member. Active members, unlike probationary members, may vote at Squad meetings and hold office. Associate members do not go on ambulance calls, but assist the Squad with administrative and business functions.