2018 Grand Marshall

Potter Valley Volunteer Fire Department

PVVFDThe Potter Valley Volunteer Fire Department is the Grand Marshall for the 2018 Spring Festival. PVVFD is a 100% volunteer fire department comprised of one chief, two assistant chiefs, three captains, and 19 firefighters. These 25 men and women are farmers, ranchers, school teachers, construction workers, business people or professional firefighters who devote enormous amounts of volunteer time to training, responding to emergencies and protecting their community.

PVVFD was unofficially started in 1930, after a large fire burned down a number of structures on Main Street. The first fire engine to serve the community was a 1927 American La France. Officially, the department was established by the Health and Safety code in 1952 but for years before that volunteers staffed fire engines and helped their neighbors in times of need.

Past fire chiefs include Earl Pickle, Jack Upton, Ray Nelson, Glenn Vaughan, Ted Knight, and Kurt Kiekhefer. The current fire chief is Bill Pauli.

In October 2017, when the Redwood Complex fire started, firefighters from PVVFD worked to protect as many homes as possible. Their efforts did, in fact, save dozens of homes as well as the Potter Valley PG&E Power Plant and Penstock, which is the water source for Potter Valley. PG&E recognized the department for their efforts, bravery and commitment.

PVVFD responds to an average of 165 emergencies per year. Their fleet of engines includes a rescue, a structure fire engine, a water tender, and three wildland fire engines and these are used to protect 170 square mile area which includes the Eel River to the North, and eight miles of Highway 20 to the South.