Mold problems shutter rural fire station

The Knightsen Fire Station will be closed through the end of the year because of a mold problem found in the building, East Contra Costa Fire Protection District officials said.

Fire Station 94, located at 15 A St. in the unincorporated community of Knightsen, first closed on Oct. 24 after fire personnel found bacteria in a well providing water to the station, fire district officials said.

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Additional testing at the station revealed last week that there was a “higher than acceptable level of mold” in the air, district Chief Hugh Henderson said in a statement.

The bacteria was removed from the station’s well and a connection to the local water provider was set up to prevent future contamination.

Crews will be working over the next several weeks to rid the station’s heating and air-conditioning system and to make repairs to the restrooms, district officials said.

Henderson said:

“Getting the fire station back in service, and ensuring that the station is safe for our firefighters, are our top priorities. … Only then can our firefighters provide the best service for our communities.”

The station is set to reopen on Jan. 1. The Knightsen station is one of four remaining operational stations within the fire district, which has had to shutter several stations in recent years due to a loss of property tax revenues following the Great Recession.

The fire district serves a 249-square-mile area spanning Brentwood, Oakley and the unincorporated communities of Discovery Bay, Byron, Knightsen, Bethel Island, Marsh Creek and Morgan Territory.