July 20, 2023
The current completion for the cell tower project is 100%. All components to the cell tower are completed. As of the week before July 4th, 2023, the cell tower was powered up. However, Verizon Wireless is going through a testing phase to determine the amount of data that can be transferred and transmitted. During the weekend of Independence Day, the cell tower performed as expected. However, it was found that the maximum amount of transmitted data is limited at this time. This is due to the tower using a microwave dish that is transmitting the data to another tower and into the Verizon system. The intent is to have fiber optic cable placed to the tower and then much more data (almost unlimited) will be transmitted. There are three sectors on the tower, of which only one is currently operating. This will allow a geographic area to be served using 4G technology. When the other two sectors are in use, then the capability will change to 5G. If you are travelling on the Control Road from AZ260 to Tonto Village, and most areas to the south of the tower, you will find 4G and up to 5 bars of service; Thompson Draw II should have better coverage. Thompson Draw I will find little to no change at this time. We are working with the company to install fiber; this should be coming soon.
Thanks for your patience.
May 30, 2023
The current completion for the cell tower project is at about 95%. The cell antenna pods were placed today. The connections to the power sources will be done the week of May 31 to June 5, 2023. It is still anticipated that the cellular data and phone connections should be up and running by the first full week of June. We hope to report in the next 8-10 days that cell service will be up and running in the Tonto Village, Thompson Draw 2 and Thompson Draw 1 within a few days!
Thanks for your patience.
April 18, 2023
The current completion for the cell tower project is at about 85%. The fencing has been completed and obscuring slats have been placed into the fence fabric. The ground under and around the Tower has been completed with grading and gravel placement. Due to the amount of snow that we have received this year, workers have not been able to complete several components, but as of this writing, the electrical panels have been placed, electrical wiring is in place in the Verizon Wireless room and connections to the Hellsgate Fire Department Fire Station 22 electrical panel are moving forward. Within the next two weeks, Verizon should be out to hang the cellular antenna pods on the tower and testing should begin mid-May. It is anticipated that the cellular data and phone connections should be up and running by the first full week of June.
January 18, 2023
The current completion for the cell tower project is at about 80%. The tower has been completed. The tower now sits at 199 feet in the air and is visible above the horizon. Workers have completed the microwave components which will allow for communications between other towers and the tower at Tonto Village. Verizon will be coming in very soon to install the cell antennas and getting the communications up and working. Verizon has indicated that both 4G LTE and 5G will be on the tower for consumer use.
December 6, 2022
The current completion for the cell tower project is at about 70%. The ground buildings are completed with roofs, doors and some electrical. The tower has started going up with the first section completed on Dec. 5, 2022. Several more sections are planned to be installed this week with potential completion of the framework on Dec. 20, 2022. Verizon will then come in and install the cell components shortly thereafter with communications wiring to occur at the same time. Next update should be right after the first of then new year. Merry Christmas and have a great and better new year!
October 11, 2022
At this juncture in time, the tower is now at 45% completion! Many things have occurred since the last reporting. Since the concrete for the buildings have been poured, the block masonry structure has been completed as of today. Footings have been dug for the expansive grounding network, and the electrical boxes and wires have been placed on the structures. Later this week, the block cells will be filled with concrete and next week the roof structures will be placed. Over 30 tons of fill dirt have been tamped on the north side of the construction site next to the wash. After the buildings are completed, the crane will be placed on-site for the erection of the superstructure. Hope to have an update on Oct. 25, 2022.
September 23, 2022
Hellsgate Fire Department Updates on Cell Tower-15% Complete
The past several weeks have found the workers completing the 4 bore holes and have placed casings and rebar in the holes. Concrete has been poured and completed the stabilization and base for the tower. In the past two weeks, the construction firm has dug footings and laid rebar into the base foundation for the cell companies’ storage facilities. This past week, concrete was poured into the footings and the slab. The concrete block has been delivered to the site along with mortar for the construction of the buildings. The steel members that create the tower are to be delivered to the site soon. Thanks for your concern and hope to see structures go vertical very soon!
August 23, 2022
Hellsgate Fire Department Updates on Cell Tower-5% Completion Status
As of Monday, August 22, 2022, the Cellular Phone tower started its construction phase at Fire Station 22 in Tonto Village. The site is being prepared for heavy work to be completed. Earlier last month, Gila County Planning and Zoning issued a permit to the Hellsgate Fire Department and to the construction company that will be doing the erection of the tower and all groundwork.
On Monday, August 29, 2022, drilling and boring of the pillars to hold up the framework of the cell tower will begin. Once this occurs, the several small buildings and other framework will begin.
We will give bi-weekly updates on the status of the tower and percent completion. The next update will occur on September 6, 2022.
Thanks for your patience in this endeavor.
March 17, 2022
FS22- the lease agreement with a cell tower builder has been completed. The builder is now getting a building permit from Gila County and should start moving ground very shortly. To keep everyone up-to-date on the progress, we have created a Goal Thermometer that shows the progress that is being made to the site. This will be updated on a regular basis. This Thermometer is located on the south side of Fire Station 22.
Fire Board- the Hellsgate Fire District is currently looking for qualified personnel to apply for the vacant Board of Directors position. If anyone is interested in applying for the position, please contact the Fire District personnel for more information and how to apply. The main qualification for the position is that the candidate must reside in the Fire District at the time of the appointment or election.
FS21- In December, 2021, Hellsgate Fire took delivery of a 2022 Water Tender. This truck replaces 2 older and outdated vehicles. This truck is now providing services to the community.
Our mission is to create a safer environment within our community and to provide for an increase in quality of life which our citizens and guest may enjoy. The fire department will strive to provide a wide range of programs and services designed to protect the lives and property of the people of the fire district and guest from the adverse effects of fire, medical emergencies or exposure to dangerous conditions created by either man or nature.
We will provide the highest Quality of Customer Service to the patrons of the Hellsgate Fire District. We intend to provide a rapid response to EMS, Fire and Public Assistance request. We will provide for the highest level of trained personnel, quality equipment and continuing education for the district.
I am very happy to join the Hellsgate Fire Family. I started working part-time with Hellsgate on Oct. 1, 2020. At that time, I spent time with former Fire Chief John Wisner and learned a lot from him in only the one month that we served together as two Fire Chiefs for Hellsgate.
I have been welcomed by 5 very thoughtful Board Members, the Business Manager and my Operations crews and look forward to working with them.
My fire career started back in 1976 working as a volunteer Firefighter for the Town of Pima. I spent 2 years with them and left to go to serve in another country for 2 years. Upon my return, I rejoined the Pima Fire Dept. It was during this time I felt the need to do more than just be a fireman. I attended Eastern Arizona College and received my EMT certification. I moved on and in 1982, attended Phoenix College and became an IEMT, then worked on up to become a paramedic.
I worked for a very short time with Apache Junction Fire and then three years with Chandler Fire. I then worked for Phoenix Fire for 27 years. Afterwards, I worked for the Gila River Fire Department for a few years.
As I have come to work in Hellsgate, I have found friends and co-workers from the past. Tim O’Malley, Sam and Celeste Agnew and many other acquaintances have surfaced. I am glad to know them and to communicate with them.
As the Fire Chief, I am trying to make many strides to continue the improvement of our financial situation, work to get grants to purchase operational items that cannot be purchased out of our current budget and to communicate with our public safety partners. I look forward to serving the district, its members and the surrounding area.