PETAL, MS (WDAM) - An agreement for mutual aid between volunteer fire departments and the City of Petal has ended.
At the June 16 Board of Aldermen meeting, officials unanimously approved ending the aid to lower the city's fire rating and insurance costs for residents.
According to a news release from City Hall, "Petal will continue to offer emergency aid to the neighboring communities, but will do so through the Statewide Mutual Aid Compact."
The release reads, "It has become more common in the past year for the Petal Fire Department to be the first on the scene of incidents in some areas of Forrest County where mutual aid agreements were in place. In some cases, the Petal Fire Department was the only department on the scene."
Officials said when this occurs more frequently, the State Fire Rating Bureau lists Petal as a primary responder to the unincorporated areas of the county, and keep the city from achieving a lower fire rating.
"The City of Petal is also committed to being a good neighbor to the communities outside our city limits, and we will continue to provide emergency assistance, when called upon through the SMAC agreement," according to the news release.