Fire Prevention

 Controlled Burns                      

 Fire Alarms                      

Who should I notify if I have a fire alarm system?

If you have a fire and/or burglar alarm system installed in your home or place of business that is, located in Yates County, you are required by Yates County Local Law 2-02 to register the alarm system with the Yates County 911 Center. Call 315-536-3033 or 1-866-308-3225 for more information.

Who should I notify if I accidentally trip my fire alarm system and there is no real problem?

If you accidentally trip a fire alarm system in your home or place of business and there is no real problem call the Yates County 911 center at 315-536-3033 or 1-866-308-3225 tell the dispatcher what happened. It is very likely that the fire department will still respond, but the dispatcher will be able to update the responding units.

What rules pertain to controlled burning?

Effective on October 14, 2009, all open burning is prohibited in New York with several exceptions, including the following:

  • •Campfires less than 3 feet in height and 4 feet in length, width or diameter are allowed.
  • •Small cooking fires are allowed.
  • •Fires cannot be left unattended and must be fully extinguished.
  • •Only charcoal or clean, dry, untreated or unpainted wood can be burned.
  • •Ceremonial or celebratory bonfires are allowed.

In towns with a total population less than 20,000 (This includes the Towns of Middlesex and Italy), you may burn tree limbs with attached leaves. The limbs must be less than 6 inches in diameter and 8 feet in length (also referred to as brush). However, this is not allowed from March 16 through May 14 due to the increased risk of wildfires.

You may only burn brush that is yours and came from your property, it is an NYS Environmental Conservation (Encon) regulation violation to transport debris to your property for the purpose of burning.

It is also an Encon regulation violation for a business or individual to burn debris of a commercial business.

You may NOT burn leaves. It is encouraged that you compost leaves instead.

You may NOT burn household garbage. Burning trash is now prohibited statewide in all areas.

The burn must be attended at all times. In the event your burn becomes out of control call 911 immediately to request the fire department.

Abandoned structures or other unique burns are subject to Encon and fire department approval and have very specific rules.

Open burning is never allowed within any incorporated village including the Villages of Penn Yan, Rushville, Dundee, and Dresden.

This FAQ is not intended to cover all possible scenarios for controlled burning. See NYSDEC Regulations website at and/or a DEC officer for more information.

Who should I notify if I want to burn something?

If you are planning a controlled burn at your residence, and one of the exceptions above applies, you should first call the Yates County 911 Center.  The phone number to report controlled burns is 315-536-3033 or 1-866-308-3225.  By notifying the dispatch center of your plan to burn material, it lessens the chances of an unnecessary fire department response to your location. 


 Responding To Calls  

How do firefighters know when there is an emergency?

The Yates County 911 Center receives and dispatches all calls for service in the Middlesex Fire Departments response area. When the 911 center receives a request for the fire department they transmit the call via radio to voice pagers. The firefighters all wear pagers that alert, the details of the call are received from the dispatcher.


I have a scanner, what frequency should I listen on?


The county is currently in the process of changing to a more modern system. The new dispatch channel is 453.250 mhz.

Here is a table with all of Yates County's new Fire and EMS channels.

453.25000 Yates Fire UHF F-1 - Dispatch ( 46.50 simulcast) 

453.57500 Yates Fire UHF F-2 - Fire-Tac 

460.07500 Yates Fire UHF F-3 - Fire-Tac 

460.12500 Yates Fire UHF F-4 - Fire-Tac - Water Supply

465.07500 Yates Fire UHF F-5 - Fire-Tac - Fire Police

465.12500 Yates Fire UHF F-6 - Fire-Tac 

453.50000 Yates Fire UHF F-7 - Fire-Tac

460.03750 Yates Fire UHF F-8 - Fire-Tac / Coordination 

Why is there a siren on the fire station?

The fire siren serves several purposes. It acts as a secondary alerting device to firefighters in the case that there is a problem with the paging system. As a secondary alerting device it positively affects ISO ratings which help your fire insurance rates. It also serves as a means of alerting the community that there will be emergency vehicle traffic in the area around the fire station.

When does the siren on the fire station get activated?

The fire siren is activated by the Yates County 911 center on all emergency level fire calls. When activated for a fire, the siren cycles up and down continually for one minute. The siren is not activated for EMS first response calls or other specific non-emergent calls. The siren is also tested once daily Monday though Saturday at 12 noon. When activated for a test, the siren cycles one time. On the fourth Wednesday of every month, at 12 noon, an Emergency Warning Siren test is conducted. The siren blows, one continuous tone, for one minute.

 Road / Weather Conditions                      

How can I get current information for local road conditions during storms?

During inclement weather, particularly in the winter, the Yates County Sheriff’s Office will occasionally issue travel advisories or even road or lake closings by issuance of a special state of emergency as declared by the Sheriff.  Citizens need to tune into a local media outlet for current travel conditions.  Please DO NOT call the Yates County 911 Center or the Middlesex Fire Station for road and travel conditions. Dispatchers need to keep phone lines open for disseminating this information to the media and other public service agencies.  Any significant information relating to highway and travel safety will be provided to local news media as soon as possible for their immediate release to the community.  You can also click here for road condition updates from the NYS Department of Transportation. If you have doubts about traveling safely and your commute is not necessary, it may be best to stay off the roads.