Fire Department getting new truck

by Emmitt B. Feldner of The Review staff

PLYMOUTH – The Plymouth Fire Department will be adding a new truck – and new rescue equipment – by the end of the year.

And it will be cash on the barrelhead for all of it.

The City Council Tuesday approved the purchase of a new Pierce fire truck and Edraulic tools for a total of $570,217.

The new truck replaces a 20-year-old that could last another five years but may have added maintenance costs in that time, City Administrator Brian Yerges explained in a memo to council members.

The purchase had been recommended by the council’s Finance and Personnel Committee in December.

At that time, Fire Chief Denis Fellows explained that the new truck will be the department’s first unit out on fire calls.

For that reason, he recommended the Pierce vehicle over a bid from Marion Body Works that was somewhat lower but did not have as much equipment and storage capacity as the Pierce.

The city will receive a $25,250 discount from Pierce by pre-paying in full, Yeges said. The city has $529,500 in a capital fund account for the fire truck and will make up the balance out of the fire department’s committed fund balance.

The purchase will include Edraulic Jaws of Life rescue equipment. The Edraulics uses electric power packs instead of the hydraulics on the current equipment, Fellows explained. That makes the rescue equipment more portable and easier to use in confined spaces and at greater distances from the fire trucks.

“Edraulics will be more efficient for us,” Fellows told the council. “It will cut down on the cost of maintenance and would make it more efficient for us to operate.”

“The fire department did an excellent job of looking at the alternatives,” Alderman John Nelson commented. “They really impressed me with their knowledge of the equipment.”

“I feel confident the city is making a good investment,” Alderman Shawn Marcom added.

“What a great plan that we can pay cash for this and not have to take a loan,” Council President Charles Hansen observed.

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