Message from the Fire Chiefs

Fire Chief John Binkaski (Photo City of Clovis)

Fire Chief John Binaski

The inception of the Clovis Fire Department began in 1892 with the formation of a “bucket brigade” comprised of employees from the local sawmill for the protection of their buildings, equipment, and lumber.

These sawmill employees would provide assistance to the community of Clovis, along with the spontaneous civilian volunteers that would spring into action when a fire erupted.

In 1912, the community of Clovis was formally incorporated as a city.

Almost immediately, the city passed a series of fire ordinances and authorized the purchase of some basic firefighting equipment available for emergencies.

A formal City of Clovis volunteer fire department was formed on October 16, 1917.

In 1966, the city hired its first full-time fire chief and five firefighters, thus transforming the organization into a paid/professional career department.

Today, the Clovis Fire Department provides fire protection services to the City of Clovis, protecting a population of over 120,000, covering just over 26 square miles, as well as to the surrounding agencies as part of an automatic/mutual aid agreement.

The Department currently consists of 67 firefighters deployed from six strategically located fire stations.

The department is also served by three fire prevention personnel and three support staff.

The Fire Department has a Class II rating from the Insurance Service Organization and is accredited by the Center of Public Safety Excellence.

Serving as the fire chief for the past seven years has been an absolute pleasure and the highlight of my over thirty years in the fire service.

Clovis is one of the greatest communities in the Central Valley and the Fire Department takes great pride in the service we provide.

Over the past seven years and with tremendous city council support, the department has been very fortunate to replace all of its front-line fire apparatus, open Station 6 to serve the growing southeast portion of the city, expand the training center and start construction on new fire station 2.

This is a $20 million dollar investment in the Fire Department to better protect the citizens we serve.

I will be retiring in July and Deputy Chief Chris Ekk will be the interim fire chief to continue the great work we have accomplished. Chief Ekk joined the Clovis Fire Department in 2019 from the Hanford Fire Department where he served for 19 year and the last four years as the fire chief.

Interim Fire Chief Chris Ekk (Photo City of Clovis)

Interim Fire Chief Chris Ekk

It is an honor to be selected as the interim fire chief and I look forward to working with all of our dedicated and professional personnel throughout our department to continue providing excellent service to our community that our department is known for.

This will be another busy year for our department and we are currently working on promotions to fill some vacant positions and our major project is the construction of our new Station 2 that serves the southwest portion of our community.

I am excited for this opportunity and congratulations to Chief Binaski on a great fire service career and thank you for your service to the City of Clovis.