Bethany, CT Volunteer Fire Dept. Uses Slates For Apparatus Inspections

About Bethany Volunteer Fire Department

Established in 1934, the Bethany Volunteer Fire Department (BVFD) protects the lives and property within the boundaries of Bethany, CT by providing Firefighting, Rescue and Emergency Medical Services. We are still one of few volunteer Ambulance services left in CT. We operate out of two stations that cover 21.4 square miles, a population of over 5,000, and we are averaging about 800-1000 calls a year. Within these borders of our town we pride ourselves of having no fire hydrants, relying solely on our ability to shuttle water to and from areas.

About Apparatus Inspections & Management At BVFD

Prior to Slate Pages we conducted our apparatus checks and maintenance records by pen and paper, which made for a very unorganized and messy system at best. All the checks and maintenance would be filled out on a preprinted form and then handed in (hopefully) at the end of the check or after work was completed and filed away into a cabinet. We had a tough time making sure checks and maintenance were being done accordingly and when we found an issue with a truck, it was tough to track down info from whom completed the check or its maintenance history. Our chiefs recognized the need for something more reliable and consistent, which brought us to Slate Pages via a recommendation from a mutual aid company.

About Slate Pages LLC

Founded in 2017, Slate Pages has improved the day to day operations of companies and organizations with our easy to use smart phone app and QR code. Unlike anything else on the market, Slate Pages is a completely customizable asset management system that can be designed by the user to track just about anything. The Slate Pages app provides 13 different field types to customize the Slate with. Text fields, number fields, photo fields, date fields, and journal/blog fields are just some of the fields allowed when designing your perfect custom Slate for whatever asset or equipment that needs tracking.

Slate Pages, LLC was created and tasked with developing a smartphone application-based inspection platform with these 5 points in mind:

  1. Cost effective. NO MONTHLY SUBSCRIPTION FEES.
  2. QR code driven to enable quick scanning using any smartphone.
  3. CUSTOMIZABLE by the users.
  4. Inspection information needs to be available on the phone, at the asset, or remotely from an internet connected computer.
  5. Easy to use.

Bethany Fire Department Meets Slate Pages 

After mastering bottle and pak inspections, Ryan and Richie quickly moved onto using Slates to inspect and manage their Apparatuses. They started by populating an excel spreadsheet with their apparatus information and organized the spreadsheet by compartment. 

Apparatus name 

  • Front Cab 
  • Driver Side Compartments #1-4 
  • Officer Side Compartments #1-4 
  • Rear Walk in compartment compartment 
  • Zoll AED Equipment 
  • Medical Bag with medications 

Each Apparatus was then assigned its own unique Slate QR code and the information on the spreadsheet was quickly imported into the Slates online portal. 

Testimonial From BVFD

“After the first few weeks using Slate Pages, our members became more proficient with the system and we began coming up with new ideas and uses for Slate Pages. We now have them on all of our medical bags, apparatus, air packs, bottles, RIT packs, daily chores list for day crew members, call run forms, and for gear washing. The web portal saves us so much time as we can see in one place such as equipment that needs to be inspected, items that are expiring, or things that were damaged or needed service. It allows us to keep track of everything without having to physically be at the firehouse.

Between all the different requirements fire departments have today, a huge part of what we do is documentation. It’s like they say “ If you didn’t write it down, did you actually do it”. This was a huge help for us by finding a simple, fast, and reliable way for our members to complete the necessary inspections. Other systems we looked at had recurring costs and were subscription based. All of our members young and old are able to complete this with no issues, which is great for members that are not tech savvy. Slate pages was the best investment we have made to bring our department into the technology era, and we continue to find more uses for it every day!”