The Lakeland Professional Firefighters Local 4173 serves its membership by providing the highest quality of representation, and political action, to advance and protect wages, hours, working conditions, and the quality of services provided to the citizens of Lakeland Florida.
In 1909 the Lakeland Fire Department began as a volunteer department. On August 16, 1916 the Lakeland Fire Department became a full-time paid fire department. Currently the Lakeland Fire Department operates from seven stations. These stations cover 91 square miles and employ 154 professional firefighters.
Lakeland Firefighters respond to an average of 19,500 emergency responses a year. The Lakeland Fire Department has raised its level of emergency medical care from basic emergency medical services to advanced emergency medical services or the paramedic level. In December 2003 Station 2 converted to this advanced level followed by Station 3 in December 2005 and Station 4 in January 2008. The two units at each of these stations will now have at least one paramedic and the advanced medical supplies needed to provide the same level of care as Polk County Emergency Services. The change will provide a higher level of care for the citizens of Lakeland within these three station's coverage area. All of the Lakeland Fire Department will soon be converted to advanced emergency medical services.
In June 2007 Lakeland Fire Department opened the Lakeland Linder Regional Airport Station 7. It will house an ARFF ( Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighting ) Truck, and will staff it with a Lieutenant and Driver. The station will be located at the corner of Drane Field Road and Airfield Court East. The station is temporarily located at the base of the air traffic control tower.