The Bel Air Volunteer Fire Company handled nearly 500 calls in January, a single-month record for fire and emergency calls.
Firefighters and emergency service personnel responded to 198 fire-related calls and 300 emergency calls, an average of more than 16 calls per day, said Richard Gardiner, spokesman for the fire company.
In contrast, the all-volunteer organization handled only 96 calls during January 1993, he said. The fire company handled an average of 309 calls per month in 1993 and 288 calls per month in 1992.
January's subfreezing temperatures, snow and ice caused more calls than usual for assistance with flooded basements, broken water pipes, automatic fire alarm problems and weather-related injuries, Mr. Gardiner said.
Many medical calls were to help those who fell on the ice and sprained or fractured ankles, legs, backs, arms and shoulders. Many others were for serious coronary and respiratory attacks, Mr. Gardiner said.
February got off to a record pace but is unlikely to match January's numbers, Mr. Gardiner said.