By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
There’s a new big rig in the house.
On Dec. 11, the Tri-County Joint Fire District took delivery of a new 21-ton fire engine for the Mount Sterling station.
The vehicle replaces the station’s 1988 engine, which was transferred to the district’s Clark’s Lake station in Pickaway County. Clark’s Lake is retiring its 1982 engine, now for sale on govdeals.com.
The fire district set aside money from its tax levy over the past four years to cover about half the cost of the $450,000 engine and financed the rest, said Chief Dave Taylor. Rosenbauer America in Lyons, S.D., built the engine. The district purchased it through All-American Fire Equipment in Washington Court House.
Features the new engine has that the old ones don’t are a totally enclosed cab, a Class A foam system and a light tower.
Enclosed cabs are now mandatory in new fire engines; in the older vehicles, the back two seats are exposed to the elements. The new cab also is roomier and can hold five fire fighters, instead of four.
“The foam system penetrates the combustibles which makes the fire go out faster and prevents rekindles,” Taylor said.
The light tower rises from the center of the engine’s roof. Coupled with a scene light, the tower helps with illumination at fire sites.
The new vehicle will go into service as soon as all 32 members of the department complete driver and pump training on it. Training from the dealer took place Jan. 4. The district also plans in-house training.
The Mount Sterling station’s other engine was purchased new in 2000.
The Tri-County Joint Fire District staff includes three full-time fire fighters and 29 volunteers. The district covers 118 square miles and encompasses the village of Mount Sterling and all or parts of Pleasant Township in Madison County, Darby and Monroe townships in Pickaway County, and Madison Township in Fayette County.
In 2013, the Mount Sterling station went on 288 runs, which is about average for the station for a year, Taylor said.