The Muscatine Fire Department is currently awaiting a brand-new fire truck. Mike Hartman, assistant fire chief, stated that the new fire truck is replacing one from 1997.
The old engine, an aerial truck, was delivered in November 1997. Typically the lifespan of a fire truck is 10 to 15 years, but the maintenance that the Muscatine Fire Department provided allowed for this one to continue being used for over 20 years.
This new fire truck is from Pierce Manufacturing, a company that specializes in fire and rescue apparatus. It is an aerial and has a 100-foot platform. Pierce is based in Appleton, Wisconsin, and has provided quality equipment in the past.
The process for the fire department to purchase this new engine began with the City Council. The department had to get approval from the Council to secure financing. The fire department also sat down and discussed exactly what the new fire truck would need to be able to do. Once that was decided, they put together a specifications document, which can run anywhere from 20 to 50 pages. The department then put out a bid request for companies to look into.
“We knew this was coming up, so we’ve been doing some research for the last three or four years just to see what’s out there and where we needed to go,” Hartman said.
After Pierce Manufacturing made a winning bid, members of the fire department visited the manufacturing site to clean up the specifications and tailor them more closely to the available specifications of the manufacturer.
Hartman stated that this new engine will cost just shy of $1.2 million and will take between 12 and 18 months to be delivered from the time of ordering. However, due to the way that the fire department is financing this project, they were able to secure their place on the assembly line faster.
Hartman is hoping for a June delivery, but that does not mean the new engine will be used immediately upon arrival.
“Once it shows up, we’re going to go through quite a bit of training. Typically it’s two weeks from when we get the fire truck to getting everyone competent operating and driving the vehicle,” Hartman stated.
Hartman is hoping for the first day of service to be on or around July 1. To follow the manufacturing of the new fire truck, please check the Muscatine Fire Department Facebook page