×

Whately shows off new fire engine

  • Whately Fire Department welcomed a new engine number four, Thursday to replace the old engine number four, which was built in 1975 and has been in service for more than 40 years. Recorder Staff/Andy Castillo

  • Whately Fire Department welcomed a new engine number four Thursday to replace the old one, which was built in 1975 and has been in service for more than 40 years. Recorder Staff/Andy Castillo

  • Whately Fire Department welcomed a new engine number four, Thursday to replace the old engine number four, which was built in 1975 and has been in service for more than 40 years. Recorder Staff/Andy Castillo

  • Whately Fire Department welcomed a new engine number four, Thursday to replace the old engine number four, which was built in 1975 and has been in service for more than 40 years. Recorder Staff/Andy Castillo

  • Whately Fire Department welcomed a new engine number four, Thursday to replace the old engine number four, which was built in 1975 and has been in service for more than 40 years. Recorder Staff/Andy Castillo



For the Gazette
Thursday, June 30, 2016

WHATELY — The sun was shining on the Fire Department last week, reflecting off the chrome trim of a shiny new engine the department had just taken possession of.

Following approval to purchase a new truck earlier this year in a town meeting, the department bought a 2014 Kovatch Mobile Equipment engine for just shy of $400,000 to replace a fire truck made by International in the mid-1970s.

The 2014 engine is a former demonstration truck.

“It has been in the works for years,” said Fire Chief John S. Hannum. “The town finally decided to replace the truck. Forty years on a fire truck is way overdue.”

The old truck was made in 1975, can only hold 750 gallons of water, has more than 19,000 miles on it and runs on gasoline, not diesel.

Hannum said the new truck is a huge improvement, and the town can expect quicker and more efficient response times to emergencies. One notable improvement, he continued, is that it can seat six firefighters wearing emergency air packs. In contrast, the old truck can seat three, and firefighters have to keep their air packs in storage compartments elsewhere.

The new engine can pump 1,500 gallons of water per minute, has a tank capacity of 1,000 gallons, and also has the ability to discharge firefighting foam.

As far as gadgets go, a backup camera, remote control water cannon on top of the truck, a GPS system and on-the-spot snow chains help bring the department’s equipment up to date.

With the addition, the department will be able to retire the 1975 truck, and take another 26-year-old engine out of first-response service.

In total, the department has five firefighting vehicles: two engines (including the newest addition), one tanker, one forest firefighting engine, and one forest firefighting tanker.