1895 - On July 10, there was a large fire destroying a total of 13 buildings and damaged 6 others. 63 people were left homeless and 19 businesses were lost. Village residents began seeing the need for improved governmental services and fire protection.
1898 - On August 2, City leaders arranged for the storage of a fire wagon in a barn. A separate agreement was made with a stable owner to provide horses and a driver for that fire wagon at $1 per call.
1899 - The common council officially organized the Wauwatosa Fire Department (WFD) and J. D. Warren was sworn in as the first Fire Chief with a department of ten members.
1900 - The construction of the orginal building to house City Hall and the Fire Department was completed. City Hall occupied the second floor and the Fire Department housed the first floor. This building still stands at 1430 Underwood Avenue and is now an antique store. Members were paid $20 per year and were allerted to emergeny calls by a steam whistle. This same year the firefighters bult a wagon for a hook and ladder company.
1917 - A 22 minute delay reaching a residential fire led the common council president to call for motorization of the department and the purchase of a hose truck for $6500. When the new vehicle arrived (during World War I), the firefighters stripped the chrome and donated it to the war effort.
1924 - The president of Erie Railroad presented a bell from the U.S.S. Wisconsin to the WFD. The bell was mounted on the Firehouse roof. This bell has since been relocated and can be seen today outside Fire Station #1 located at 1601 Underwood Avenue.
1938 - The fire department ran 215 calls.
1939 - WFD made the transition from a part-time paid department to a full time department of 40 members. Members worked an 84 hour work week and training sessions were held on Sundays.
1942 - A new firehouse was opened at 1463 Underwood Avenue (demolised in 2010). This same year a tragedy occurred as 12 men were killed and 6 were injured at the Forsyth Warehouse when the fourth floor concrete collapsed.
1952 - The City of Wauwatosa completed the largest annexation in Wisconsin history when it annexed the Town of Wauwatosa on November 25, 1952. This annexation almost tripled the size of the city taking it from 4.5 square miles to 13 square miles.
1954 - 2 firefighters and 1 police officer were wounded by a drunken 20 year old man with a shotgun. All three survived.
1958 - Rescue 2 was struck and overturned by an 18 year old driver who said he had not hear the siren.
1960- WFD ran 955 calls.
1964 - 4 dispatachers were hired to staff the dispatch center.
1966 - A fire department training area was completed at the city's public works yard.
1968 - The fire deapartment ran 2,589 calls this year and the common council approved a 27 man daily minimum staffing level.
1970 - The first 6 members completed their Emergency Medical Technician training course.
1972 - WFD became the second city in Milwaukee County to implement paramedic services.
1980 - The Wauwatosa Rotary Club raised enough funds to purchase the first hydraulic extrication tool for the WFD. Later in the year, the Common Council approved a 60 year contract with Milwaukee County to provide fire protection services for the Milwaukee County Grounds.
1982 - In December of 1982, a new joint Fire-Police Dispatch Center was put into service at the Wauwatosa Police Station where is still exists.
1983 - WFD ran 3,512 calls this year. Fire Station #3, currently located at 10525 Watertown Plank Road
on the Milwaukee County Grounds, was completed and dedicated in April.
1984 - Fire Station #2 was remodeled with the addition of a dormitory, lockers, bathrooms, and a new apparatus bay.
1985 - The Fire Prevention Bureau began monthly fire safety trainings with the school district.
1989 - The City of Wauwatosa joined with the rest of Milwaukee County and began utilizing the 9-1-1 system.
1990 - WFD began upgrade to computerization and the Fire Prevention Bureau establish a Juvenile Fire Setters Program.
1993 - Almont Associates, a consulting firm hired by the City of Wauwatosa to study the fire department operations and costs, released its final report. The report suggested the decommissioning of one of three ladder companies and increasing staff on the remainging two ladder companies to four firefighters. The study also recommened replacing the ladder trucks with quint apparatus and the construction of a fire training tower.
1995 - A new fire training tower was dedicated.
1996 - WFD obtained a grant to purchase the Fire Safety House for public education.
1997 - Station #3 suffered flood damage, as did 2 apparatus. This same year, 12 members were trained in Hazardous Materials response.
1998 - WFS hired its first 2 female firefighters. In addition, the first quint apparatus arrived and was placed in service at Station #2.
2001 - September 11, 2001, changed the fire service forever. The 9-11 attacks prompted members to begin training in weapons of mass destruction. The department also began carrying II Pam Chloride kits on each rig in the event of a chemical attack. WFD also obtained a grant to replace its self contained breathing apparatus.
2003 - WFD ran 5,014 calls and obtained a grant to replace all radios including dispatch consoles.
2004 - The Child Safety Seat program was established and WFD obtained a grant to purchase a squad apparatus.
2005 - The first Advanced Life Support/Basic Life Support (ALS/BLS) Med Unit was placed in service.
2006 - Milwaukee County suburban fire departments joined the Wisconsin Mutual Aid Box Alarm System as MABAS Division 107. Wauwatosa dispatch was designated as the Division 107 Dispatch Center. Also this same year, the second ALS/BLS Med Unit was placed in service.
2008 - A grant was obtained for the purchase of extrication equipment and the third ALS/BLS Med Unit was placed in service. Electronic patient care record keeping began.
2010 - June 5, 2010, new Wauwatosa Fire Department Headquarters, located at 1601 Underwood Avenue, were dedicated. A grant was obtained to purchase personal protective equpment (PPE). This same year, The International City/County Management Assocation (ICMA) was commissioned by the City to once again study the WFD.
2011 - Many changes were made as a result of the ICMA study and the Budget Repair Bill. WFD began pursuing Fire Service Accreditation and the Chief staff returned to a traditional management structure by assigning Crew Chiefs.
2012 - The Wauwatosa and Milwaukee Fire Departments agreed to start working together at significant incidents. Later, North Shore, West Allis, and Greenfield Fire Departments would agree to participate in what is now called "Shared Services". In addition, an agreement was reached with North Shore Fire Department to share mechanics, reserve fleet, and a Training Academy. The first Fire Department Strategic Plan was published, a new Pierce Engine was placed in service, and mobile data terminals were installed in all apparatus.
2013 - The Wauwatosa Fire Department participated in multiple community disaster preparedness exercises and the City's department directors were trained to work in the Emergency Operations Center (EOC). A public-private partnership known as the Tosa Area Preparedness Partners or TAPP was also facilitated. Telestaff scheduling and payroll software was implemented and an AFG Grant was obtained to replace all self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA). In addition, two new Horton Ambulances, a Command Car, and a pickup were placed in service.
2014 - All new radios were purchased as the Fire Department committed to staying with Milwaukee County 800 Radio System. A new training software called Target Solution was implemented and a new Pierce Quint was placed in service. The North Shore and Wauwatosa Fire Department agreed to share a Battalion Chief of Training and a hiring process. The Wauwatosa EOC was exercised twice and then was activated for the civil unrest following the shooting of a homeless man in Milwaukee.
2015 - The Rescue Task Force Concept to insure early access of patients in an active shooter situation was adopted on a County wide basis. The West Allis Fire Department joined the Shared Training Academy and the Shared Services Group comprised of Milwaukee Fire Department and all bordering neighbors began to practice automatic aid. In addition, the Wauwatosa Fire Department became one of only 218 fire department worldwide to hold fire service accredited status.