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    Post Mapleton to get new Fire Engine with Grant money

    Mapleton Fire Department receives $190,000 grant for truck

    Ron Whiting, Mapleton Fire Chief, Derald Olsen, Mapleton Fire Marshall, and Kris Ollerton, Assistant Fire Chief, stand together for a photo in front of the fire department's 1952 Studebaker Fire Tender Monday, Mar. 28, 2011 at the Mapleton Volunteer Fire Department in Mapleton. The Mapleton Fire Department recently received a grant, which will be used to replace the 1952 Studebaker Fire Tender with a new one. ANDREW VAN WAGENEN/Daily Herald .
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    ..Thanks to the hard work of the Mapleton Fire Department Truck Committee, the residents of Mapleton will be seeing a new fire truck around town this summer. The new truck will replace the 1952 Studebaker Tanker and the 1962 Ford Pumper that are still in use.

    In January, the Mapleton Fire Department received approval from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for a $190,000 grant that will be used to purchase a new water tanker pump truck. According to the city's website, "the new fire truck will be delivered to coincide with the official opening of the new Public Safety Building this summer."

    "The need to replace this 1952 Studebaker tanker has been a concern of the fire department for many years," said Fire Chief Ronald Whiting. "This tanker has been reconfigured many times over the past 50 years."

    Before this grant award, the volunteers of the fire department have relied on the vintage trucks.

    "Our volunteer firefighters have taken pride in keeping the tanker in service, but the time has come to replace this piece of equipment with a modern tanker/pumper that not only will provide better protection to the citizens of Mapleton but will meet all the new regulations and provide a safety to the firemen," Whiting said.

    The grant for the new equipment was written in March 2010 by Derald Olsen and the Mapleton Fire Department Truck committee. The truck committee is comprised of the Fire Chief Ron Whiting, Asst. Fire Chief Josh Olsen, Captain Alan Bills, and Training officers, Cody Bills and Ryan Whithers.

    Derald Olsen has been with the volunteer fire department for 10 years serving in various capacities from Fire Chief to Safety officer to his current position as the Fire Marshal of Mapleton.

    "Derald has been writing grants for the Mapleton Fire Department for eight years and has been successful in receiving over $500,000 in grant monies for the fire department," Whiting said.

    FEMA has a program that offers four types of grants to fire departments, which include vehicle acquisition grants and assistance to fire station construction grant. Firefighters nationwide can apply for the grants. Once the grant is written and filed, it goes through a peer review process. A panel looks at various criteria relating to the situation of the department in question, such as the daily impact on operations, financial need and performance record. Only the grants that make it through the review process have a possibility of being funded.

    Despite the fact that the method is straightforward, there were many daunting aspects throughout the entire process.

    When asked what were the most challenging Whiting replied, "Working through all the issues of writing a grant that will make it through the peer review and working with the vendors to insure we get what is needed on this Tanker/Pumper."

    In terms of the size of the city and its small budget, the volunteer fire department is very successful. Chief Whiting attributed this to the 50 years of quality work and dedication put forth by the volunteers, not only those that serve currently, but all that have ever served the city of Mapleton.

    Mapleton residents who will miss seeing the vintage Studebaker after it is retired can rest assured. It will be on display in the front lobby of the new Mapleton Public Safety Building that is due to open this summer
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