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  1. #1
    Forum Member FIREMECH1's Avatar
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    Default Apparatus naming standard

    Is there a standard to which all FD's must follow that correlates to what that apparatus is called???

    We recently had to redo the decals on our aerials to read "Truck XX". As well, dispatch is now calling them "Truck XX".

    After several conversations with FF's and Chiefs, most don't like it, and think it's silly. From what I understand, it was done to follow some "guideline standard" of naming apparatus's, that would be understood by any and all those involved with an incident, nationally. In other words, so there wouldn't be any confusion on what rig was what.

    Some said it was from the NFPA, and others said something else, but it was considered mandatory to rename/call any ladder/aerial a "Truck", and we did.

    Personally, I find Ladder or Aerial to be more fitting, than "Truck". To most of us, a "truck", would fit the bill of "Engine" or "Pumper".

    So, is there a "National" or "Other" organization that controls the naming of apparatus's, or not.

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    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."


  2. #2
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Nope, either fortunately or unfortunately, there isn't a national standard.

    Most of the departments in our area call their aerials, no matter if a platform or not, "Truck." Go to northern Virginia, and they're called Truck (aerial) or Tower (self explanitory). Very regional when it comes to apparatus designations.
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    Dont think there is a standard but we call our units what they are
    engine
    brush
    tanker
    rescue
    ladder
    tower, etc.
    it helps keep any confunsion to a minimum especially when taking another unit for mutual aid
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    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    Hmm, my 105" Pierce TL runs as a "Truck" at some calls, an "Engine" at other calls....and once in a great while a "Squad".

    My 1750gpm E-One pumper runs as a "Truck" at some calls, an "Engine" at other calls....and once in a great while a "Squad".

    On the side of each of them, it says....Point Pleasant Beach Fire Department.

    Our apparatus get assigned their tasks based on the call.
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  5. #5
    Forum Member FWDbuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FIREMECH1 View Post
    Personally, I find Ladder or Aerial to be more fitting, than "Truck". To most of us, a "truck", would fit the bill of "Engine" or "Pumper".
    What planet are you on?

    I have been all over the USA. East. West. North. South. Been in big cities and small towns. Seen metropolitan fire departments, County-controlled departments, Federal departments, and departments that control themselves. "TRUCK" has always been reserved for a piece of apparatus with an aerial device (excluding squrts or other devices not designed for the regular climbing of personnel.....)
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Buff is right, if someone says "I need a truck" or "send a truck" they would expect a vehicle with some sort of climbable aerial device.

    I've never heard anyone call an Engine or Pumper a "truck" unless its just a generic term for any piece of fire apparatus in an informal conversation. And in that case its something like "how many fire trucks do you send to this..." or "Could you bring down a fire truck to ABC day care to show the kids on tuesday" etc etc.

    But never ever have I heard anyone say the word "Truck" is better suited to describe an Engine or makes them think of an Engine.

    Perhaps the only thing close to universal in the U.S. Fire Service is the words "Engine" and "Truck". You'd be hard pressed to find anyone who wouldn't give you an apparatus full of water, hose, and a pump if you asked for an Engine. And you'd most definitely get something full of ground ladders and an aerial (possibly with some hose and a pump) if you asked for a truck.

  7. #7
    Forum Member FIREMECH1's Avatar
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    Easy boys.... (nameless & FWDbuff)

    To most of us, a "truck", would fit the bill of "Engine" or "Pumper".
    Clarification.....

    As in a fire "TRUCK" would be considered an engine or a pumper, by the window lickers. I didn't say that we, or anybody else called engines/pumpers, a "TRUCK".

    Otherwise, I'm on planet Earth. But I have been thinking about hitting Uranus. (enter smiley face here)

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    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  8. #8
    MembersZone Subscriber dmleblanc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    What planet are you on?

    I have been all over the USA. East. West. North. South. Been in big cities and small towns. Seen metropolitan fire departments, County-controlled departments, Federal departments, and departments that control themselves. "TRUCK" has always been reserved for a piece of apparatus with an aerial device (excluding squrts or other devices not designed for the regular climbing of personnel.....)

    Well, you haven't been far enough South I guess. In this parish a fire truck is still a fire truck. Only one department in the parish has an aerial, and that's only as of the beginning of this year. Before that there were none. So, yeah, when we're responding someone's going to the station "to get the truck" and we know it's an engine.
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    Paincourtville, LA

    "I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream — and I hope you don't find this too crazy — is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, 'Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!' That would be bad."
    — C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"

  9. #9
    Forum Member FWDbuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dmleblanc View Post
    Well, you haven't been far enough South I guess. In this parish a fire truck is still a fire truck. Only one department in the parish has an aerial, and that's only as of the beginning of this year. Before that there were none. So, yeah, when we're responding someone's going to the station "to get the truck" and we know it's an engine.
    I'm not talking about the use of the work "truck" as a noun, when being used when referring to a vehicle (as in "load the boxes on to the truck".) It is the same as using the word "car" when referring to an automobile.

    In this instance, I am referring to the use of the word "truck" when being used as a verb, I.E. "Truck Company."
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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    I'm not talking about the use of the work "truck" as a noun, when being used when referring to a vehicle (as in "load the boxes on to the truck".) It is the same as using the word "car" when referring to an automobile.

    In this instance, I am referring to the use of the word "truck" when being used as a verb, I.E. "Truck Company."
    That's not a verb as used. If anything it's an adjective (describing the noun "company"). Now if you truck your boxes down the road, that would be a verb form.

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    Forum Member FWDbuff's Avatar
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    Yeah, thats what I said, an adjective.
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    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    As I said above....my pumper is often assigned Truck 1 or Truck 2. And yes, it does truck work.

    No aerial on it, just ground ladders. But with all the trees and wires around here...it's not that often that aerial access is available anyway.
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  13. #13
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Bones, so the designation of the rig changes from call-to-call?
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  14. #14
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    Yes. For most of our calls, which are alarms and other minor issues, the first arriving piece is designated Truck 1. It gets to the scene and sends their crew in to investigate. The 2nd due piece gets assigned Engine 1 and stands by at the nearest water source. As the situation dictates, they will normally be moved up to the scene to assist.

    We won't have the pumper arrive 5 minutes before the aerial and sit at a hydrant while no one investigates.

    We went to this system 4 or 5 years ago and it has been working very well for us. We have had some odd looks from people when the aerial has laid the 5" supply line and has the preconnects coming off it while the pumper is sitting in front with it's ground ladders gone.

    And yes, there are times when the aerial is designated Truck 1 and pumper Engine 1 regardless of the response order, but they are few.
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    so whats the piece called when its sitting in the bay?

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    Forum Member FIREMECH1's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info guys. I wasn't sure if there was a standard (Nationally) or not.

    From my newby eyes, and all the things I see on other threads that talks about how the NFPA pushes their "guidelines" on equipment, I figured that they would have had something to say on what the apparatus's were called.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF
    "Firemens gets antsies. Theys wants to goes to fires. Sometimeses they haves to waits."

  17. #17
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Bones,

    I'm very open minded about thinking outside of the box, but I must say, that seems really...well, wierd.

    When responding on automatic of mutual aid, how are the the rigs designated?
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  18. #18
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    nameless, the vehicles are identified by the county wide number scheme.

    Station #, vehicle type. ex- my first out 1000gpm + pumper is 4201. Station 42, 01 for 1000+gpm pump. 03 is a rescue, 05 is an aerial device, 06 is a boat, 07 is a utility vehicle, 09 is a personnel transport (vans). 02 is for under 1000gpm pump.

    So in the bays, I have 4201 (1750 pumper) and 4205 (50' Teleboom).
    Other station - 4301 (1750 pump), 4305 (100' TL), 4311 (1500 pump).

    Don't really agree with that numbering system, but it's what the County (and we know counties never do anything wrong/stupid ) came up with.


    BoxAlarm, depends on who calls. Town south of me has our 100' aerial and my pumper coming in as Trucks. They also call the next town over and get 2 vehicles from them as Engines. Town north of me gets the same 2 pieces (initially) but normally have the 100' as Truck and the pumper as Engine.

    Out of the box thinking....ya, a bit. It took some getting used to, but we feel overall that it has helped. Yes, all of our guys train on truck work and engine work. Are they as proficient as a big city guy that runs on a truck all the time or an engine all the time? Probably not. Then again, with our call volume, they are not going to be at that level anyway. Are they trained well enough on both "sides"? Come on down, we'll drill with anyone.

    Last night, around 9:30pm we had a call for an alarm in a condo. I was IC. First vehicle showing up was my pumper, they were assigned Truck 1 before they arrived. What that means to them...officer goes inside with his interior team, which is "irons" man and "can" man. 2 guys in the back take those positions, grab their necessary tools and know to meet the officer at the front door. They know they are going in to investigate the alarm. 2 other guys on the truck know they are "roof" and "ovm". As there is no immediate hazard seen, 1 will do a 360 of the building, other will get ready to throw ground ladders.

    2nd vehicle was the 100' aerial. 3rd vehicle signed on right after them, so the aerial was assigned Truck 2. 3rd vehicle was assigned Engine 1. Truck 2 crew knows to come up to A side and due to what was being found with alarm, standby. Roof man went to alarm panel (which is on outside of building).

    3rd vehicle arrived and as engine 1 knew to stop and stage at the hydrant on the corner.

    All of this is accomplished by simply stating "4201 - Truck 1", "4305 - Truck 2", "4205 - Engine 1" on the radio. And that was it. We have been able to greatly reduce our radio traffic. And guys know what is expected of them, what is expected of their crew, and what to expect other crews to be doing.

    It's nice.
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  19. #19
    Let's talk fire trucks! BoxAlarm187's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    All of this is accomplished by simply stating "4201 - Truck 1", "4305 - Truck 2", "4205 - Engine 1" on the radio.
    THAT helps explain things! Thanks....
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  20. #20
    Forum Member FWDbuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Station #, vehicle type. ex- my first out 1000gpm + pumper is 4201. Station 42, 01 for 1000+gpm pump. 03 is a rescue, 05 is an aerial device, 06 is a boat, 07 is a utility vehicle, 09 is a personnel transport (vans). 02 is for under 1000gpm pump.

    So in the bays, I have 4201 (1750 pumper) and 4205 (50' Teleboom).
    Other station - 4301 (1750 pump), 4305 (100' TL), 4311 (1500 pump).
    I am so confused. This is exactly why plainspeak has been mandated by NIMS. Plus, add in the fact that it is simple, direct, and to the point.

    Again, I challenge- what is so wrong with "Engine 42"
    "Rescue 42"
    "Ladder 42" (or Truck!)
    "Utility 42"
    "Marine 42"
    "Engine 42-1"
    "Squrt 42"

    Let's say there is a large-scale incident in Philadelphia, and you guys are dispatched to be part of a Task Force to go and stage in Camden. Wouldn't it be nice, if I, as the Staging Sector Officer, knew what apparatus you had coming in? ("What the hell is a 4201? I need a squrt to head over to Philly to assist with mass decon......Is 4201 a squrt?) "Camden Staging to Ocean County Squrt 42, you and Burlington County Engine 27 are going to join Task Force 2 and head to Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia."

    I need a Rescue for the collapse task force.....What the hell is a 12-2-24? That was my high school locker combination. "Camden Staging to Burlington County Rescue 13, you are going to be assigned to collapse task force 2."

    "Staging to 1103.....I need a ladder to join Task Force 2.....Whats that? You are a Utility Unit towing a boat? Disregard.....Staging to 8675309....I need a ladder for Task Force 2.....Whats that? You are a popular song?...Disregard....Staging to 123456.....I need a ladder to join Task Force 2......Never mind.....

    Or....

    "Staging to Camden County Ladder 17......Join Task Force 2 upon your arrival at staging."
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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