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  1. #1
    lt.jmp21
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs down Out dated fire trucks

    The City of North Tonawanda, NY Fire Department usualy runs w/5 engines [1970,73,&75 Ward LaFrances, 1990 Americam Eagle, and a 1994 Ferara], 1 arial ladder truck [1980 Pierce 100 ft LTI] , 1 arial tower truck [1974 85 ft Suphon], 1 rescue [1995 ford], a command car [1999 Suburban], and a car for the chief [1996 Chevy]. we also had 2 reserve engines [1961,70 Ward LaFrances], 1 reserve rescue [ early 90s GMC], 2 reserve command cars [1993,95 Chevy wagons], a fire prevention car [1990 Dodge], 1 car for fire investigation [mid 80s Suburban], a car for the traing officer [1991 Chevy wagon], and a brand new pick up [1999 Dodge Ram] for the mechanic [who has since retired] . The NTFD is a combo paid & volunteer dept.
    This is not the case now. One of the ladder trucks has been out of service for the last 4 months because it is in need repair, and just sits there collecting dust in the station. One of the reserve engines [which is a 1961 Ward LaFrance] is unable to perform at a fire scene because of age and mechanical work beyond repair. Also the bussiest engine in the city E-2 [a 1970 Ward LaFrance] blew its engine and is now junk. The reserve engine [which is its twin] is out of service w/the same problems. So now the bussiest fire house in the city remains close, and will remained closed for about 2 more weeks untill the reserve engine is fixed. All of this is because we have a city council how does not realize how important top line fire apperatus is.
    So as of today 1/27/00 w/ the biggest fire to hit the city in 10 yrs. only 5 days behind us. The NTFD runs w/4 engines, 1 ladder, no reserve engines, and a lot of cars that just sit behind fire hq and get snowed on [because the city will not hire paid ff to fill positions].
    I want to know if ther are any other fire dept is in as bad of trouble or is as srewed up as ours.

    Joe Piwtorak
    Volunteer Lieutenant E-2
    NTFD

    These are my views and not nesseceraly the views of the NTFD.

    ------------------
    Joseph M Piwtorak

    [This message has been edited by lt.jmp21 (edited January 30, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by lt.jmp21 (edited February 20, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by lt.jmp21 (edited February 24, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by lt.jmp21 (edited February 24, 2000).]


  2. #2
    FFRAGS
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Unhappy

    Sounds like you better tell the city that you are not going to ride and operate these unsafe vehicles any more. Get the residents and media involved. Check what your ISO rating is. Do you feel safe riding these things that belong in a museum? Wake up!

  3. #3
    F02
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    How's it go? "We who have been asked to do so much,with so little,for so long.Can now do anything with nothing." I'ts probably gonna take a bad fire to wake them up.I'ts to bad but polititions ar'nt known for being real proactive.I know of a combo cheif who went to a council meeting and after dropping a pile of broken parts on the table,informed them this was all that was left of THEIR old wore out truck.Worked for him.

  4. #4
    Truckie from Missouri
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    A neighboring FD has two aerial-type companies, one a "Quint" the other a "Truck". The Truck was new last fall, and wrecked a few weeks after putting it in service when an idiot pulled out right in front of them. That can happen to anyone. THe Quint has some sort of axil problem, and has been out of service for several weeks. So, this city has no aerial (only reserves are pumpers and ambulances). Very recently they started calling my company (my departments only truck company) in on automatic response to any reported structural fire. I heard a rumor that ISO made them do it. Curious...

    ------------------
    Proud Member of IAFF Local 3133!

    Stay safe.

    Ken

    ***DISCLAIMER***
    All postings I have &/or will post are strictly my opinions. I am representing only myself here, not the IAFF, Local 3133, or my employer. No animals were/will be harmed from the production of this disclaimer. Thank you.
    ***END OF DISCLAIMER***

  5. #5
    IA Lt/P
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    We are in the process of weeding out some older trucks in our department. Our plans are to replace three of the older trucks with a new rescue pumper. In your situation you might want to bring the idea of consolidation of vehicles up to the city. Getting rid of all of your old engines and replacing them with two or three (whatever you need) new engines will save your city money on maintainance and will probably help you improve your ISO. If your old engines are like ours, you can replace several with a new 1000 gpm pumper and have no loss in pumping capability. The three trucks we want to replace have a combined 750 gpm and 600 gallons in tanks, A new engine will probably have at least 1000 gpm with 1000 gallon tank. Keeping old engines around is a good way to drain $$ from your city's budget. Cities usually like the word 'consolidation', especially when there is an improvement (or no loss) in service delivery.

  6. #6
    Romania
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    We are currently in a reserve rig, 1982 ALF. It is a nice truck, but beats you up. THese older trucks just don't hold up well at busy companies. If our new ferara wasn't such a lemon...

    ------------------
    Alan Romania, CEP
    romania@uswest.net
    IAFF Local 3449

    My Opinions do not reflect the opnions of the IAFF or Local 3449.



  7. #7
    cpthunt
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Just when you think you are having tough times, you find someone that is having it worse. I really feel for you guys since we are in a similar situation, although our city organization is repairing the trucks.

    Our problem is the downtime of the apparautus for repairs since a majority of our fleet is ten years or older. Right now I am staffing a 1974 pumper, which is filling in for my front line pumper, a 1975 model. While it (1975 pumper) was having warrenty work being done on the new motor that was put in last year, it was discovered that some work needed to be done on the power steering pump. Well they found that in order to repair it they would have to custom make the part. The truck has been out of service for the last six weeks. Another reserve pumper, a 1969 model, was involved in a wreck two weeks ago. Once again there is a problem of finding parts for the truck.

    Last year our dept. was the subject of an investigative report by local TV news about our staffing levels and our equipment. At that time all of our front line apparatus and one reserve apparatus were out of service. This was due in part putting off, or not making needed repairs to equipment. Since then the trucks have been kept in better condition, but the problem of considerable downtime is still a major problem.

    Aquiring new apparatus to replace the older units has been discussed but put off because of budget considerations. Driving the fiscal concerns of our governing body is electirc deregulation in our state. We provide electric power in our city, and we share a debt with other cities for a nuclear power plant.

    This budget, we were allowed to replace three staff vehicles (including our command vehicle) with surplus police cars that were going to be auctioned, they are 1993 models. Our dept has not made an apparatus purchase since 1993, and we have not purchased any new staff support vehicles since 1990.

    Our problem is less of a one of money, but one of priorities. Our electric, sanitation and police dept's have had the majority of their fleets replaced, and major capital improvements made in the gas, public works dept's. In 1998 our city annexed over 3100 acres into the city limits consisting of residential, industrial, commercial occupancies and an executive airport. The fire dept. received no improvements to deal with annexation other than automatic mutual aid contracts with vol. depts. Our newest pumper is first due in this area, the truck before the annexation had over 25K miles.

    I wish I had an answer for your problem. It seems that fire protection is not a priority in your government. I would suggest making sure the community is aware of the problems, and refuse to operate substandard equipment- even if it means less service. And if the community oblivious to the problems in your dept, resign yourself to the fact that they dont care and provide them with what they have paid for.

    -------
    I am responding as a concerned individual, not as a represenative of any organization.

    [This message has been edited by cpthunt (edited February 18, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by cpthunt (edited February 18, 2000).]

    [This message has been edited by cpthunt (edited February 18, 2000).]

  8. #8
    lt.jmp21
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Since I last reported ther have been some changes in the dept. First The capt of Fire Prevention has retired and a succesor has not yet been named. Also the original E-2 has been towed away and its twin Reserve E-6 which was replacing E-2 is still in the shop getting repairs. The new city council finally gave the ok to buy a new engine a 1500 gpm Pierce, also the allowed $81,000 to repair the ladder truck. I think this new council is waking up and realizing how important public safty is. I just hope they follow through on thier promices.

    ------------------
    Joseph M Piwtorak

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