Wisconsin law provides a mechanism for local governments to recover up to $500 of their costs for responding to fire calls on highways maintained by the state. This program is intended to provide relief for those situations when fire services are required on the state highway right-of-way and the local government responsible for providing the service is unable to recover the costs for that service from the party receiving the service, or when the responsible party is unknown.
Wisconsin law provides the general criteria for eligibility. The following communities are eligible:
- All towns served by any type of fire department.
- Villages served by volunteer fire departments.
- Cities served by a combination of paid and volunteer fire department.
Eligible highways include all state trunk highways, US highways and the Interstate system. Connecting highways under the maintenance responsibility of a city or village are not eligible for reimbursement under this program.
When responding to fire calls on an eligible highway, three events are allowed for reimbursement through the program. The events include:
- Extinguishing a fire on a vehicle, structure or vegetation.
- Handling gasoline or other hazardous materials.
- Requesting for extrication equipment to remove individuals trapped in vehicles as a result of a crash.
Reimbursement for fire equipment responses include these events and do not include reimbursement of ambulance equipment responses. A local government is required to attempt to recover its costs for qualifying emergency/fire call services from the insurer of the responsible party and the individual. Documentation of good faith attempts to collect fees must be included in the reimbursement claim.
To request reimbursement
Complete the claim form (DT1725) and provide sufficient supporting documentation for fire call events within one year of the date of the qualifying event. If the fire call being claimed is a result of a motor vehicle incident/accident, the Wisconsin Motor Vehicle Crash Report (MV or DT 4000) must be submitted with the claim. Crash reports can be obtained from the county sheriff's department.
Claim guidelines, program requirements, and claim form for the State Trunk Highway Fire Call Claim program are contained in the following packet.
DT1725 State Trunk Highway Fire Call Claim
Fire call claim program laws
Wisconsin Statutes s. 60.557 (2)
Wisconsin Statutes s. 61.65 (8)
Wisconsin Statutes s. 62.13 (8)
Kassandra Walbrun, Program Manager,
Kassandra.Walbrun@dot.wi.gov or (608) 267-0483