(WXYZ) - In an exclusive interview, Detroit's new Fire Commissioner tells us you're about to see a new beginning. He's a familiar face who will now lead DFD through a historic rebuilding period.
"This is more than just a job, these men and women are like family to me" says Commissioner Jonathan Jackson who began working in Detroit as a firefighter at 19.
As far as manpower goes, he will have the ability to hire more firefighters and make use of a substantial grant from FEMA for $24 million. He says "It will allow us to hire 150 firefighters and it will have an immediate impact on vehicles and manpower on the street."
Jackson also plans to reduce EMS response times, hire more arson investigators and improve vehicles and equipment. All things the prior administration failed to do. Jackson is eager to get started and acknowledges "Mayor Elect Duggan and Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr giving 100% support."
Jackson plans to work with the Water Department to improve failing systems. Above all he says "These are my brothers and when they hurt I hurt." He adds "I want to send sympathy for retired Captain Tony Gilbert and Lt. Kenny Brazzo. My heart and sympathy goes out to their families."
7 Action News will be watching closely to make sure these goals are achieved.