What is State Fire?
State Fire is a division of the South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (LLR). It consists of the Office of the State Fire Marshal, the South Carolina Fire Academy, and the Emergency Response Task Force.
Chief Jonathan Jones, the State Fire Marshal, was appointed by Gov. Henry McMaster in 2017. Chief Jones is also appointed, by the Governor, to also serve on the State Emergency Response Commission.
The Office of State Fire Marshal is comprised of Community Risk Reduction, Code Enforcement, and Engineering Services. Chief Nathan Ellis serves as assistant state fire marshal and manages these three sections.
The Fire Academy is operated for the express purpose of educating and training the state's paid, volunteer, and industrial fire service personnel. The Academy also provides leadership, guidance, and services to help the fire service carry out its responsibilities at the local level. Chief Dennis Ray serves as its superintendent.
The role of Emergency Response is to assist local, regional, and state governments in times of need by providing subject matter experts, guidance, and on-scene professional resources during disasters or emergencies that overwhelm local resources. In addition, it supports LLR’s role in emergency support functions within the State Emergency Response Plans and day-to-day operations. Lastly, South Carolina Firefighter Mobilization serves as a statewide mutual aid assistance agreement utilizing the state’s 46 counties. The system allows for firefighting and rescue resources to be effectively and efficiently moved throughout the state to assist during local, regional, and statewide disasters and emergencies. Chief Ken Kerber manages Emergency Response.