public safety

City of Katy Receives $2 Million Grant for New Firefighters

Pictured from From left to right, Lieutenant Carlos Valladares, Firemedic Edison Saunders, Firefighter Nick Bourdoumas, Firemedic Obayana Allen, Firemedic Kyle Fritsche, Mayor Pro Tem Durran Dowdle, Firefighter, Michael Ondurich, Mayor Chuck Branner, Engineer Operator Shay Theriot, Congressman McCaul, Captain Tom Walters, The Fire Chief Russell Wilson, Firemedic Adam Troncoso, Assistant Fire Chief Kenneth Parker, Engineer Operator Joe Villarreal, Firefighter Christian Kugler, Firemedic Krysten Lerchbacker.

By George Slaughter The City of Katy has been working to develop a second fire station. Now the city will receive a $2,181,579 federal grant to pay for the firefighters who will staff it. The grant, known as a Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grant, is awarded from the Department of Homeland Security. According to the FEMA web site, SAFER was “created to funding directly to five departments and volunteer firefighter interest […]

Fire Chief Reflects on First Year in Charge

Posing in this picture are Katy Battalion Chief Jordan Smith, Fire Chief Russell Wilson, Firefighter Eric Valls, Equipment Operator Monica Shiller, Equipment Operator Tyler Ferguson, Firefighter Kurt Turner, Equipment Operator Matt Ondruch, Firefighter Ramirez, Firefighter Jarrod Bowen, Firefighter Carlos Lanzas, Lieutenant Shane Hughes, Captain Geffrey Argao, Assistant Chief Dana Massey, and Assistant Chief Kenny Parker (George Slaughter photo)

By George Slaughter Third of a three-part series Describing the time when he interviewed for the Katy fire chief position in 2016, Russell Wilson said coming to Katy would be like coming home. He’s from Bridge City, which is near the Texas-Louisiana state line. He described both Bridge City and Katy as small towns with a passion for high school football. Wilson came to Katy in May 2016. It was his first position where he […]

Katy Fire Department Continues Its Evolution to a Full-Time Department

ESD 48 responded to the late night fire at the newly renovated El Tiempo Cantina on Kingsland and Mason Road. Harris County Fire Marshall Office is currently investigating the cause. Photo by Sharon Bowers Graf.

By George Slaughter Second of a three-part series With Katy’s continued growth, it is not surprising that the fire department would also grow from being a part-time, volunteer operation to something more complex, with firefighters needing skill sets besides just fighting fires. With a new station forthcoming, the city is looking for firefighters—but not just any firefighters. Candidates must have a structural firefighter certification, basic level or higher, from the Texas Commission on Fire Protection. […]

New City Fire Station on Track Despite Delays

By George Slaughter First of a three-part series After unwanted delays, the City of Katy is proceeding with its plans to develop a second fire station, this one south of I-10. The new station will be built at Bell Patna Drive and Katy Mills Circle, near Katy Mills Mall. It will be a three-bay, approximately 14,000 square-foot structure. City officials have been planning it for years. The site was the second choice. The original site […]