St. Paul residents can rest that much easier now knowing the fire department has a brand new truck on hand in the event of an emergency.
Getting a new fire truck is a lot more involved of a process than going to a dealership and picking one out. In fact, Fire Chief Trevor Kotowich says bringing the new vehicle into the fleet was over a year-long process from beginning to end. “We spent the last 15 to 16 months spec’ing out this truck. From the time we awarded the contract to Rocky Mountain Phoenix out of Red Deer, it took approximately 12 months to complete the construction of it.”
A committee of five was formed to tour fire halls across the province and check their trucks out. The committee took the features they liked from different models and tailored them into a custom order. The fire truck was then built in Lions, South Dakota then shipped up north.
Kotowich says the new truck was ordered to comply with national standards. “The National Fire Protection Association indicates that first out, front-line fire trucks be twenty years or newer of its in service date. Being that the first new truck (in our fleet) was a 1997, the town was in a situation that they needed to replace that first out truck. Now that 1997 is still in our fleet and it still functions to today and it’s going to function for many years to come.”
If a fire truck built in 1997 makes you think of a beat up 1997 pedestrian vehicle in terms of reliability though, there’s no need to worry. In addition to being made to last a very long time, while fire trucks undergo major duress during a call, they spend considerable time in a fire hall not being used and maintained.
The total price tag for the new truck came in around 550,000 dollars.