Our Proud History
Fire District #1 of Johnson County has a strong and proud history in southwest Johnson County. From the roots of small township volunteer departments to a full-time department with five stations and 70+ members, Fire District #1 has had quite an evolution over the past few decades.
Fire District #1- Johnson County was born from a compilation of multiple agencies. The City of Gardner has had its own fire department since the town's inception in the late 1800s. This city department was responsible for taking care of persons and property inside the city limits. As unincorporated areas grew around the community, it became necessary to provide fire protection through a separate entity that had taxing authority. Gardner Rural Fire Department came into existence with the advent of fire districts.
The City of Edgerton has had a fire department since the late 1800s. The Edgerton Fire Department maintained protection for the city of Edgerton as well as having taxing authority as a Fire District to provide coverage for the unincorporated townships near the city.
Industrial Airport Fire Department was created to protect the large industrial and airport complex that Johnson County was developing on the former Olathe Naval Air Station site. IAFD was also responsible for providing ambulance service to Gardner, Edgerton, and the unincorporated areas nearby. This was a service that had previously been provided by Santa Fe Rescue, which was located in the City of Gardner.
In 1993 Gardner Rural, Edgerton Fire Department, and Johnson County Fire Rescue (Formally IAFD) consolidated to form Fire District #1 of Johnson County. This newly formed entity was tasked with providing fire protection for the areas previously served by all three. The ambulance service that IAFD had operated was also dissolved at the time of consolidation, allowing for Johnson County Med-Act to provide transport services. This led to Fire District #1 of Johnson County providing first response BLS service utilizing fire apparatus.
In 2010 the consolidation of the City of Gardner FD with Fire District #1 of Johnson County allowed for a continuation of improving service through the most efficient use of personnel and equipment. This final consolidation has led to our current department's rapid growth and development.
In November 2021, Fire District #1 began providing fire/rescue services to the portion of Fire District #2, including the City of Spring Hill and a portion of Miami County. Twenty-Two (22) Fire District #2 personnel transitioned to Fire District #1. The existing fire station located in Spring Hill will be operated by personnel from the combined departments. With this transition paramedic services are now offered and will continue to be expanded throughout the district.
With the continued expansion of the Cities of Gardner, Edgerton, Spring Hill, and New Century Fire District #1 of Johnson County is assured of many challenges. These challenges will be met with the same resolve that allowed this department to continually strive to provide compassionate service and rapid response to our community’s diverse needs.