Volunteer Fire Department

Lester Prairie Fire Department 2023 Annual Report
In 2023, the department responded to a total of 168 calls for service. 164 calls in 2022. Previous 5-year average was 160 per year. A total of 2,203 hours were expended on these calls.
We averaged over 10 responders to each call. (10.24)

The call breakdown is as follows:
(15) Fire incidents. Total property and contents loss of $12,000.
(117) Medical and vehicle crashes
(8) Hazardous condition (gas leaks, chemical spills, CO alarms)
(7) Service calls (lift assists, assist PD)
(17) Good Intent (Canceled en-route, authorized controlled burn)
(4) False alarms
Calls by district:
City of Lester Prairie – 85
Bergen Township – 34
Winsted Township – 20
Mutual Aid / out of area / other – 29
Classroom and hands-on training accounted for another 853 man-hours.

• We continue to operate with a full roster of firefighters.
• Installed gear lockers and a generator at the fire station thanks to donations.
• The Relief Association purchased (4) new Zoll AED units this year to replace aging Phillips units.
• All ARMER radios within the county were replaced this year.
• We continue the Auto-Aid agreement with Winsted. This has been working very well.

Currently at 30 members. Two more currently on the waiting list.. One retirement (Chris Ehalt 15 years) Tyler Siewert joined the department this fall. We currently have four firefighters going through initial training.
Current officers and members:
Matt Tonn, Chief; Dave Horsman, Assistant Chief; Steve Dietel, Assistant Chief; Scott Christenson, Captain; Keith Christen, Captain; Chris Bahr, Captain and Training Officer; Tifanie Shimanski, Secretary; and Paul Christensen, Treasurer.
Don Artmann, Josh Artmann, Chris Bahr, Keith Christen, Paul Christensen, Scott Christenson, Kevin Danielzuk, Paul Dhoore, Shadd Dial, Steve Dietel, Mallory Feltmann, Jeff Forcier, Nick Fosdick, Alex Hoese, Tyler Hoese, James Hoof, Aaron Hoover, Dave Horsman, Mat Karschnik, Dan Kroells*, Mike Lindberg, Luke Meyer, Chris Mike, Fred Pawelk, Dustin Reid, Mike Schauer, Tifanie Shimanski, Tyler Siewert, Matt Tonn, Maurice Tonn, and Max Zitzloff.
* Reserve Members

Tanker replacement. Purchase agreement signed for delivery in late 2025. Freightliner chassis, 3,000 gallon tanker built by Midwest Fire in Luverne MN.
Officer / Command Vehicle.

Truck purchase in 2025. Rescue is next but may look at a tanker replacement instead.
Officer / Command vehicle using retired PD squad. Exploring the concept.
Fire station improvements – flooring, HVAC, exhaust removal, possible generator.