'I'm looking at what's happening now:' Councilman makes case for new fire station


    District 9 Horry County Councilman Paul Prince said he feels confident the county will take action on a proposed fire station in Longs. Right now, ten volunteer firefighters primarily serve the area. (Taggart Houck/WPDE)<p>{/p}<p>{/p}

    During the last 30 years, a lot has changed along Highway 9 near Longs, but the building for first responders tasked with keeping the area hasn’t.

    Horry County Fire Rescue Station 13 has been in the same building for more than three decades. The 10 active volunteers, use two trucks to assist, also getting help from neighboring stations, if needed.

    All 10 are volunteer firefighters, like Billy Gore and Cecil Hegger.

    For the last several years, they’ve heard talk about a new station.

    “Well it’s been on the table for what, more than five, six years, at least,” said Gore. [Talk] will come up, go back, come up, go back,” he said, laughing.

    Horry County Councilman Paul Prince, who represents District Nine, said he’s been working for more than five years to get a new station with full-time firefighters.

    “The population is going up just about every day,” he said. “Somebody’s buying a home and moving in that area.”

    Which is why he started asking. He said, in part, delays are to blame. In some cases, other fire stations needed work that took precedence over building a station in his area.

    “I’m saying we need it right now. We need to get started,” he said.

    But this year, he said, it’s a top priority for Horry County Council.

    “I’m looking at what’s happening now and in the future with the growth in that area,” he said.

    Numbers on response times at station 13 and how a full-time station would help the area were not available Friday night.

    Volunteers at Station 13 said they get about 20 calls a week. They said medical emergency calls have been more common than calls for fires.

    Prince expects to know more about a new station in April at the council budget retreat.

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