1. #1
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    Default What do you think about this?

    My department covers approximately 35 square miles, permanent resident population of 2200, 25 volunteers, we cover a rural area 98% residential and we cover a portion of Lake Mitchell. Our current fleet consists of a 82 Ford F-250 light rescue which is also our EMS response unit, a 01 E-one Pumper on a GMC chassis, a 82 FMC Pumper, a 67 Boardman Pumper (reserve), a 82 International Tanker, and a 76 Dodge Brush Truck. The areas we cover on Lake Mitchell require 4 wheel-drive and most of the driveways allow limited turning space. We are in the process of buying a new rescue truck (EMS truck) to replace our current 82 rescue. We have spec'd out a 2004 F-550 E-One, crew cab with a 10 foot rescue body, 4WD at a cost of roughly $108,000. I have been thinking about this and I feel this new truck will mostly meet our needs but we are still not going to have the turning radius we need, the new spec'd truck was listed as 26' long I think. Anyway, my new idea (I have too much free time at work) is to buy an SUV such as a tahoe, suburban, expedition, etc, to be our first out EMS response unit and buy a good used rescue-pumper to place our light rescue equipment on and outfit it to be a second out EMS unit. We do not have much rescue equipment now but we have plans to increase our services over the next few years. Now the cons that I see are going to be: The initial cost is going to increase probably by about 20-25,000 basically the cost of the SUV; we will be adding an additional truck so insurance cost will increase. The pros I see are: We will be adding another pumper to our fleet; We will have a first out EMS unit that will get where we need it to get; The EMS unit will save on fuel costs; We will have room to grow over the next 10-15 years with the rescue-pumper (The area's population is increasing yearly, we are located halfway between Birmingham and Montgomery Alabama along I-65); we will be able to respond a truck mutual aid and carry 5-6 people in one truck without reducing our capabilities in our first-due coverage. These are just a few of my first thoughts. It is going to be tough to convince the powers that be to do this, (they don't like to spend the taxpayer's money, they would rather keep it in the bank), and it is probably going to be tough to find a good used truck to fit our needs. So blast away, I want to know honest opinions, as harsh as they may be. I have searched all the threads on rescue-pumpers and the departments that use them either love them or hate them. Thanks for all your time and input.
    Matt Griffin
    Chief
    Eastern Chilton County Division of Fire, Rescue, and EMS, Station 91.

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    Just curious, what is your budget, how much do you have to work with.

    That EOne seems petty high, you could probly build it yourself for half that useing a used F550 and a utility box, and still have enough left over for tools/jaws of life.
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    We take in roughly $40,000 a year through a mill tax, we are in the process of building a sub-station which should increase our budget to about 55,000. (That is another discussion). Anyway, we have a utility body on our F-250 now, we just have EMS and a sawzall, a few ropes and that is about it. We don't have any rescue equipment other than that. I know that utilty body on the F-550 utilty body would be bigger than what we currently have but big enough for all the rescue equipment? I know that E-One is a little pricey it has a lot of small stuff spec'd out on it that we were planning on using in the future. And the guys in our department are not good about doing things themselves, I have no experience at that type thing so I would not want to try to do it. If we had to depend on our department to do something themselves I am afraid it would never get done.
    Matt Griffin
    Chief
    Eastern Chilton County Division of Fire, Rescue, and EMS, Station 91.

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    Understandable. It is not always a good idea to over tax your vols.

    Have you shopped around at all for a good used unit? With your limited budget, you should also be applying for any and all grants that you can find.

    It may or may not work in your area, but you could approach the local law enforcement (probly Sherriff) in regaurds to the 1033 program.

    http://www.csp.state.co.us/GSProg/1033.htm
    http://www.csp.state.co.us/GSProg/1033info.htm

    1033 DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE EXCESS PROPERTY GENERAL INFORMATION

    The following stipulations apply to all equipment provided under the Excess Property (1033) Program despite type, condition, or source. (Additional stipulations may apply.)

    The equipment is utilized in support of law enforcement operations, providing support to the law enforcement officer on the street. The equipment must directly assist in the execution of his/her primary duties. Fire Departments meeting certain requirements qualify also for equipment under this program.

    The receiving Law Enforcement Agency (LEA) assumes sole responsibility for all associated legal liabilities and costs.

    It is not the intent of this program for an agency to sell excess Department of Defense (DoD) property to obtain funds; nor to trade excess DoD property for new equipment from a commercial vendor; nor to convert to personal use. Equipment may not be sold, transferred, or disposed of except as directed by DoD and departmental regulations. Equipment no longer needed will be disposed of according to the laws and regulations governing the disposal of public property for your agency.

    *items requiring DEMIL will be identified as such when issued, and require the equipment be returned to a Defense Reutilization and Marketing Office (DRMO) or to 1033 State Coordinator when no longer needed.

    A LEA cannot request equipment for an unauthorized fire department, city/county road maintenance department, school district, etc.

    There is no comprehensive list of equipment that is available through the DoD, no are there specific stocks set aside for LEAs. Examples of equipment requests received in the past include:

    Aircraft Computer Components Ponchos
    BDU Uniforms Desks Radios
    Binoculars Exercise Equipment Rain Gear
    Blankets Kevlar Helmets Safes
    Body Armor M-14 rifles Sleeping bags
    Cold-weather Gear Office Furniture Vehicles



    Requests for aircraft , weapons and Armored Personnel Carriers (APCs) are forwarded with a cover letter from the Law Enforcement Support Office (LESO) to the Pentagon for approval. Requests for such items require separate request letters.

    When requesting DoD equipment support, LEAs must remember that the mission of the Armed Forces is national defense. Therefore, DoD equipment may not be suitable for law enforcement and very little law enforcement peculiar equipment will be available through DoD.

    The Department of Defense does NOT charge for excess property provided to LEAs. Applicable transportation costs may be applied to some equipment.

    Most excess equipment is used and some is declared unserviceable for military use. All excess property is provided as is without any warranty at all. If the equipment at a DRMO is not suitable or serviceable for law enforcement, the LEA does not have to take it.

    Agencies requesting surplus aircraft must have a functioning aviation operation and demonstrate that they have the resources and capabilities to properly operate, maintain, secure, and insure the aircraft being requested.

    Approved agencies are permitted to visit a Defense Reutilization and Marketing Office (DRMO), such as Ft Carson, for the purpose of locating the equipment that may assist the law enforcement agency's operations. Only two (2) persons from the agency will be allowed at the DRMO to screen at any one time. However, up to four (4) persons can be authorized/designated on your agency's data sheet to screen equipment. The LEA will be required to identify for authorization these individuals as changes occur.
    I am curious as to the bold text above myself.

    Fire Departments meeting certain requirements qualify also for equipment under this program.

    I have yet to find out what the certain requirments are for this program. If anybody knows, please let me know! I would greatly appreciate it.

    I guess my point is that there are a lot less expensive ways to provide fire protection then most folks realise. Most fire service equipment has around a 100% markup, so you do have a lot of dickering room, dont be afraid to talk to a lot of vendors.

    I dont know how many calls you have a year. That, along with other stats about your district, seems to be some of the main factors in many grants.
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    Here is another assistance link Helping our own.

    http://www.helpingourown.org/

    To be honest though, there are probly a lot of other FDs much worse off then yours.
    -Brotherhood: I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.
    -Mistakes: It could be that the purpose of you life is to serve as a warning to others.

    -Adversity: That which does not kill me postpones the inevitable.

    -Despair: Its always darkest before it goes Pitch Black.

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    Thanks for your input SamsonFCDES, I am too sure there are departments worse off then we are. Last year we had 172 calls, this year we are on track to top 200. Most of those were EMS but we run fire, EMS, rescue, MVC's, service calls, mutual aid, etc... We try to provide as many services as possible with our limited budget and manpower. I know it is hard for everyone to give input on this since it is impossible to post everything about the department. I just feel since our EMS call volume makes up the majority of our calls it makes since to use a smaller vehicle that serves that purpose and purchase another truck that leaves room for our department to grow.
    Matt Griffin
    Chief
    Eastern Chilton County Division of Fire, Rescue, and EMS, Station 91.

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    What are your departments priorities? Do you run more EMS oriented calls than fire? Do you send manpower alone for mutual-aid calls? How many EMS people normally respond to calls? Does your current rescue carry hose and or portable fire equipment?

    The reason I ask is if your current rescue carries some rescue odds and ends and no fire equipment, then you need to add more money other than the 20-25k for cost you noted for hose, hand tools, lighting, water appliances and such so that a rescue-pumper is just that, if not then it is just a rescue and there is going to be no cost savings or any justification in my opinion. If it is not going to be set up for fire also and then if you add newer rescue tools to play with, then again, it is a pricey medium-heavy rescue.

    So you can not get a full sized Ford crew cab in all your areas. If that is the case, then you need to discuss adjusting the thinking behind the full size and looking at a SUV if it will carry enough people and equipment to do the job correctly for most situations and some that you all can think of in the future.

    Granted most fire service dealer companies are going to be higher than doing it yourself. But there are other companies out there that can save you a few grand because they cater to the EMS-Rescue side of the business. Either way, spec out what you are going to need now and in the future, but make darn sure it is going to work for your people. Discuss different options as to what may or may not work. But keep an open mind. Remember the priorities of the Fire Department first and follow the plan of action your officers have set up.

    There are some pro's to the full sized Ford also. Sometimes we look at the overall length as being the problem, sometimes it is just the width of the vehicle that is the problem, so check that out also. With that vehicle you can carry an array of equipment also, such as tools, ropes, scba's, tic's, ems gear, AED's, backboards, stokes, hand tools, generators, lighting, and more. With only 200 calls now, you probably will see limited fuel savings overall,escpecially since that vehcile does not respond to all calls. But if Mutual Aid only wants manpower then you have a device that can carry that and their gear along with scba's and the like. Great command vehicles too, as well as great lighting vehicles, and generally good all purpose tools if used wisely. Don't sell them short!

    Most importantly, communicate and get what is needed now and down the road. If I knew the answers to the questions I asked Maybe I could have been more help.


    STILL STANDING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Last edited by orangebuster; 10-15-2003 at 02:16 PM.

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    Go for it. The SUV approach seems logical for First Responder EMS use. Now, you mentioned a sub-station. Are you going to get more equipment for it, or relocate some of the present fleet? Reason I asked was, If you don't need it for the sub-station, why not get rid of the Boardman reserve engine along with the rescue. If you get a rescue pumper in place of the reserve, and a SUV in place of the rescue truck, you have the capacity to carry more equipment, improve your service delivery, create a safer operation, all without adding any more vehicles to the fleet. Or, if money allows, add the SUV and Rescue pumper to the current station and move the current rescue and the 82 pumper to the sub-station. Lotta ideas and ways to do this, but you ARE on the right track. Stay Safe....
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    Thanks for the thoughts guys now to answer a few questions:

    Orangebuster: Great point about the equipment, I totally ignored the fact that firefighting equipment will have to be bought to outfit the rescue engine. We run more EMS than fire, a lot more. It depends on what we send on mutual aid as far as what is requested. My thought with that was, once the truck was "fully stocked" was that we could go on a mutual aid call with one truck and do whatever was needed. I was thinking along these lines so when we were called for mutual aid, unless they needed a tanker we could just roll this truck, put 6 in the cab (most of the time) instead of 2 and be safer, that all goes to the POV response discussion. EMS response varies, 1-6 depending on the time of day and who is around. Our current rescue does not carry firefighting equipment. What you suggested using the F-550 for is right along what we were going to do with it. We will not be able to buy all of the equipment when we get whatever we get but a couple of us are trying to plan for the future instead of putting a band-aid on our current issues. Great points and thanks!

    hwoods: Our plans for the sub-station are to relocate equipment. What we plan to do is: Have an engine (01 E-one), tanker, rescue and brush at sation one; engine (67 Boardman), and engine (82 FMC) which we are converting to a tanker (it all has to do with the rules that the county commission (politics) wanted to require to build a sub-station). What I thought we might could do is sell the boardman, put the tanker (82 FMC) and the (01 E0ne) engine at station 2, and have an EMS unit (SUV), rescue/engine, tanker, and brush truck at station one.

    The original thought was for the F-550 to be a rescue/service truck, service truck in ISO terms, and it would be our mutual aid response truck. Now, we have thought of the idea of putting a pump and tank on the 550 but we just increased our cost and we could (I feel) get what I am talking about for nearly the same cost if we did that. Now we are sacrificing getting a new truck but from what I read on these forums if we went to a used custom rescue engine they are constructed better and are built to last longer.

    Once again thanks guys!!
    Last edited by ECFD924; 10-15-2003 at 04:02 PM.
    Matt Griffin
    Chief
    Eastern Chilton County Division of Fire, Rescue, and EMS, Station 91.

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    Hello,

    I was reading the original post and my take was that turning radius in driveways was the big issue.

    For $2,000.00, I can add a reverse on the transmission. Just kidding.
    Do you guys responed with an ambulance on medical aids? If so why not position your apparatus on the street so you have egress if you you need to get out of there and have the ambulane Co. worry about the turning radius.

    Oh well, I may have read the many posts wrong so never mind my comments if they do not apply.

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    Originally posted by ECFD924
    I know that utilty body on the F-550 utilty body would be bigger than what we currently have but big enough for all the rescue equipment?
    We run a F-350 with utility body as a brush truck. However, when our rescue-pumper is out of service, all of our rescue gear (jaws, chains, hand tools, etc.) are moved into the brush truck. There is plenty of room for both the added rescue gear and the compliment of wildland gear normally carried.

    The truck has a 200 gallon booster tank and 20 gallons of Class A foam. It carries a 100' 1.75" pre-connect so that if we stumble across a fire while in the truck, we can do some limited supression until the engine arrives.
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    We currently run a Ford Excursion as a first responder vehicle, and it works very well. Seats 5 and still has plenty of room for all the needed supplies.

    That said, we also just purchased a 02 Horton Rescue (Thier Demo) and it is also fully stocked for medical calls, however it only runs on MVA's. It is also fully equipped as an ISO service truck.


    I say go with the SUV and the rescue pumper, it may cost more but will be worth it in the long run.

    On the 1033 program, our Sheriff will get things under his name and the "loan" or give them to the departments, contact your local law enforcement and see if they will do the same. There are still some surpus Blazers coming out. Also, nothing says your SUV has to be new, a good used Bronco or Blazer could be had for a lot less money and fill your needs for several years untill more money is available.

    Also, hit up the local dealerships. You would be suprised how willing some may be to donate a used SUV or give it to you at a deep discount if you don't mind putting "Donated by XXXXXX Ford" on the sides. Write up a nice proposal describing what you need and what you are willing to give in return (free publicity at time of donation on newspaper, radio, and TV, lettering on side of truck, and the extra publicty when you run it in parades and such) Stress how many runs it will make in a year and how many people will see it. Paper is cheap, and printing it up and delivering it in person may get you a free truck. If not, your only out $10 and some time.

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    I just wanted to thank everyone for the great discussion and ideas, I will be using this information in my presentation to the "powers that be".
    Matt Griffin
    Chief
    Eastern Chilton County Division of Fire, Rescue, and EMS, Station 91.

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