About The Communications Bureau

The Communications Bureau’s overall mission is to receive phone, radio or computer messages from 9-1-1 call takers, the general public or other agencies; interpret or evaluate these messages; and then take the proper action by dispatching the appropriate resources to the emergency or handling the non-emergency situation.

Located in the Lucas County 9-1-1 building located at 2144 Monroe St., the Toledo Fire and Rescue’s Communication Bureau (Alarm Office) is the vital link between the public’s request for assistance with fire and medical emergencies and the Toledo Fire’s emergency response units. The Communications Bureau is a 24-hour operation charged with maintaining reliable communications among all fire division members, with administration and all secondary support agencies.

Fire Lieutenants oversee fire dispatch operations and are directly involved in all unusual or working fire incidents such as first, second, and third alarm fires, HAZMAT, water rescue, and confined space incidents. The fire dispatchers are charged with notifying the appropriate number and type of fire apparatus via mobile radio or alert receiver and dispatching these units as quickly and expeditiously as possible. The fire dispatchers gather and maintain all information related to the emergency and then forward this information to responding units. The fire dispatchers are also responsible for the notification of support agencies such as Red Cross, public utilities, Coast Guard, Environmental Services and more.

Toledo Fire and Rescue Department operates on the Lucas County 800MHz Radio System. The Communications Bureau is responsible for the operation and maintenance of all Toledo Fire radios, alert receivers, and other communications equipment that operate on the system.

Toledo Fire & Rescue Dispatch in the fourth site for the Ohio Fire Chief’s Emergency Response Plan.

Department Staff

Deputy Chief Damon Williams was appointed to the Toledo Fire & Rescue Department on July 7, 1993. He was promoted to Lieutenant in 2001, Captain in 2010, and Battalion Chief in 2013, and then to Deputy Chief on November 2, 2018.

Deputy Chief Williams is a National Incident Management System, All-Hazards Type III Communications Unit Leader (COML), certified by the State of Ohio, Dept. of Public Safety and the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security. He is trained as an Incident Safety Officer from the Ohio Fire Academy and as an All Risks Incident Dispatcher. He was assigned to Station 4 until his move to the Communications Bureau as a Lieutenant, where he served as the Acting Captain of Communications until his promotion to the position. As a Battalion Chief he has managed the Communications and Professional Standards Bureaus, and served as Battalion 2 and Relief Battalion on A-Shift, in the Operations Bureau.

Deputy Chief Williams received the Presidential Certificate of Appreciation from the Ohio Fire Chiefs’ Association in 2016 and is currently finishing his Bachelor’s Degree in Fire Administration from Bowling Green State University. Chief Williams is currently assigned as the Deputy Chief of Communications Bureau, Professional Standard Bureau, Fire Investigative Unit and the Employee Assistance Program.


Lieutenant Stephen Rutkowski was appointed to the Toledo Fire & Rescue Department on July 24, 1997.  Lieutenant Rutkowski was promoted to Lieutenant on March 15, 2013. He currently serves as a staff Lieutenant in the Communications Bureau.


Communications Bureau

2144 Monroe Street
Toledo, Ohio 43624
Phone 419-936-3550
Fax 419-936-2758