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Published: Monday, 4/22/2013

Toledo fire department increasing presence on social media sites


The Toledo Fire and Rescue Department wants to connect with the people it serves, and is trying to do so with a new presence on social networking Web sites.

The department launched its Facebook page on March 20 with a post thanking Hanson, Inc., the company that set up the page and designed the department's new Web site, toledofirerescue.com.

The Maumee-based digital company provided its design services free of charge, said fire Lt. Matthew Hertzfeld, who will be in charge of the social sites.

The Facebook page, found by searching, "Toledo Fire & Rescue Department" has more than 560 "likes" in the month it has been online.

On it, Lieutenant Hertzfeld, the department's public information officer, has posted photos and videos from fire scenes.

The most popular post -- about a woman rescued from a burning house -- went up Wednesday and, as of about 10 a.m. today, had 12,204 views, 41 "shares," 283 likes, and 30 comments.

The push to be more social is to increase transparency and interact with the public, said fire Chief Luis Santiago. Doing both of those things will help educate the public on all the fire department does, he added.

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