District Biography

The Juniata Rural Fire Protection District was formed in May of 1955. Elections held resulted in the first Officers of Edwin Kent, President; Albert Gangwish, Vice President; George Grothen Sectretary/Treasurer and members Elvin Witt and Delmont Ruhter.

AREA: The Juniata Fire District encompasses an area of 69 square miles and is located in the north central part of Adams County, Nebraska. Adams County is located in the south central part of Nebraska.

TOPOGRAPHY: The District lies in an area of mostly flat prairie land that has been tilled into farmland. We have very little grass or timber land. The land is generally divided into one square mile sections that are accessible by gravel roads.

POPULATION: The population served is between 1,200 and 1,600 people (estimate). The bulk of the population resides in two villages located within the District. These two villages will be covered later.

FACILITIES SERVED: Two railroad lines, Union Pacific and Burington Northern Sante Fe, send over 100 trains a day through the District. Amtrak also sends through two trains a day. We also have U.S. highway 6.

Two large agriculture complexes with 7 concrete elevators, 2 dry bulk fertilizer buildings, 2 anhydrous storage plants, and 1 fuel depot that also has propane are located here. Another fertilizer plant shares a District boundry with us and we are a first response dispatch to that facility too.

We protect 1 rural High/Middle School, one Elementary School located within one of the villages, and 1 rural Elementary/Middle Parochial School which lies between the villages.

Neither village has a pronounced business district because of the proximity to Hastings, but both have a sprinkling of businesses; convenience stores, auto mechanic shops, bank, restaurants, etc..

One large feed lot offers a variety of exposures. There is also one foundry.

The proximity to Hastings also gives us the opportunity to run large Mutual Aid calls as well.



The village of Juniata lies in the southeast corner of the District. The current population is about 700.

Early fires were fought using bucket brigades. Later a hand pumper (the one shown in the apparatus/stations page) was added.

The Village of Juniata organized its’ first fire department in 1933 after a number of fires destroyed many of the businesses in town. The first roster had 25 members. The first Officers of the Department were C.A. Wright, Carl Gangwish, Dale Alves, and H.B. Wright. In 1947 purchased were a pumper, a tanker, 400′ of 2.5″ hose and a siren. A cistern water storage system was put in place.

In 1957 the Fire Dept. petitioned the Village Board for a community water system and adequate mains and hydrants. The first water system was installed in 1958.

The Village of Juniata was officially annexed into the District in 1977, though some records say it was annexed earlier. The Village furnished the original Fire Hall, but in 1986, because we out grew the space, the District built its’ own 5 bay Fire Station which also houses an office, a separate communications room, kitchen, and a meeting room. In the middle 90’s the Mutual Aid District started a uniform numbering system and the station became Station 80.

In 2005, the meeting room was remodeled to better accomodate training classes and a new training area was built out behind the Station. (See pictures and description on the “Training Center” page)

The Station currently holds 5 pieces of ‘in-service” apparatus, and one antique hand pumper that is pulled in parades. The roster shows 20 members that live in Juniata.

Juniata has a water system with 50+ hydrants most of which provide 1000+ gpm.

Juniata Carries a 6 I.S.O. rating



Four of our members live outside the Village.


The District is notified by pager from the City/County 911 center in Hastings. Juniata also uses a siren for certain calls. The County shares a County-wide frequency for radio traffic to ease Mutual Aid calls.

The District responds to all types of calls including but not limited to; fires, vehicle accidents, rescues, public assistance, medical, etc.. We average 65 calls a year.

We presently have 11 members who are State Certified First Responders, and we have an ambulance but do not transport. Medical transport and ALS is provided by Rural Metro Corporation out of Hastings. Many of our members are C.P.R. with A.E.D. certified.

A majority of our roster is presently Awareness Level Haz/Mat certified, and 4 of our members are Operations Level.

The department is proficient in stabilization, and extrication using the jaws-of-life.

We are trained in high angle rope rescue, ice and swift water rescue.