LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- It's official: after years of planning and discussion, the Middletown Fire Protection District has merged with Anchorage Fire & EMS. 

The merger took effect on March 1, 2018, after Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer signed an executive order. The two districts are now headquartered on Urton Lane in Middletown, and operating as Anchorage Middletown Fire and EMS.

Officials say the merger will allow for improved fire and emergency protection services, with faster ambulance response times.

"Middletown and Anchorage residents can expect faster response times and more ambulances to serve them and their loved ones when they need it most," said Andy Longstreet, the chief of the newly merged district. 

During the next several months, the combined district has plans to hire and train more employees, bringing the total staffing of the merged district to 92 full time employees and 20 to 25 volunteer firefighters over the course of the next several months. 

The combined district will include 26 firefighters, EMTs, and paramedics on duty 24 hours a day, staffing four fire trucks and four ambulances.

The district expects to receive two new ambulances in the near future.

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