The Walnut Cove Volunteer Fire Department was placed on probation last week after the department did not send enough firefighters to more than a dozen fire calls over the past year.
The Office of State Fire Marshal placed the department on probation on July 27, the N.C. Department of Insurance said Wednesday. The department did not respond with the legally required four members and one engine on 17 occasions, DOI officials said.
State standards require departments to send "at least four members and one engine to all fires and fire alarms in structures."
The department is made up to 20 to 30 volunteer firefighters. Walnut Cove town manager Homer Dearmin said their volunteer status is precisely the reason some fire calls were not staffed to state standards.