LFD chief, others deputized by Georgia State Fire Marshal’s office

Published 11:00 am Saturday, February 6, 2021

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LaGrange Fire Department Chief John Brant, Lt. Garrett Brubaker, Fire Marshal John Thomas and Deputy Fire Marshal Dennis Kilgore were recently deputized by the Georgia State Fire Marshal’s office.

“We are able to now assist the Georgia state investigators on investigations,” Brant said.

Brant said they will now be able to investigate fires and inspect buildings at state facilities like motels, churches and daycares.

“Those all require a state inspection that we will now be able to do ourselves,” Brant said.

“The state is pretty limited on personnel, so they deputize local fire marshals and inspectors in those areas.”

The LaGrange Fire Department has always done their own investigations and has Georgia state investigators assist when there is a fire death or suspicious fire.

“We will now be able to be more involved on those investigations when there is a death or arson,” Brant said. “Our local investigators are deputized, so they can assist in that process.”

Brant added that they have also had to call on them for the use of the K-9.

“It’s a big deal for Lt. Garrett Brubaker, Fire Marshal John Thomas and Deputy Fire Marshal Dennis Kilgore because it helps us dramatically at LFD,” Brant said.

“It also helps the residents that want to have a business. Say someone owns a business that falls under the state category, and it may be a couple of months before the state can get out there and do an inspection because they have such limited staff. We will now be able to collect the money for the state and do the inspection ourselves.”

Unlike the state, Brant said they have about a week turnaround for inspections.

“The more inspectors begin getting deputized, the more we are able to assist the citizens of LaGrange and the state of Georgia,” Brant said. “Here at LFD ,we are always trying to improve on what we offer our citizens and what we offer our business owners. We will always continue to try and improve as a department.