Government » City Departments » Fire Department
As a modern fire department, Cokato Fire & Rescue responds to a lot more than just fires. The range of calls in 2008 included car crashes, fires, gas leaks, and many other emergencies. The department’s response area includes Stockholm Township, Cokato Township, the City of Cokato, and half of French Lake Township.
Years ago, the story was different. In the 1800s, the Cokato Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department was first organized after a terrible fire burned downtown Cokato in July 1883. From there, firefighters purchased their first fire engine in 1888 and built a wood water tower soon after, so they would have plenty of water to fight future fires.
The Cokato Fire Department formally organized in 1896, well over 100 years ago. They’ve fought numerous fires since then, including a fire at Cokato High School in 1917, a garage fire in 1919 that destroyed 15 motor vehicles, and another downtown fire that burned First National Bank, a drug store, and a doctor’s office. There were even three mystery fires in Cokato schools in December of 1937 and the Cokato Hotel burned down in 1977.
The modern roster of firefighters
Cokato Fire & Rescue has a roster of 24 active members. The fire chief is Jeff Carlson. The City of Cokato also operates an ambulance service, which is a separate department but housed in the same building as the fire department. Jim Erickson is the ambulance director. The non-emergency number for the fire station is (320) 286-2452, although if there is an emergency, call 911. The fire station – which the city is looking at expanding in the future – is located on Jenks Avenue in Cokato. Correspondence should be sent to PO Box 1030, Cokato, MN 55321.