Archive for September 6th, 2020

New home for New Lenox Snorkel

Excerpts from

No matter where it is, this old snorkel fire truck is always a big attraction. The U.S. truck drove numerous missions for the New Lenox Fire Protection District, southwest of Chicago, for 45 years.

US Snorkel is part of collection in Germany

Haix USA photo

In 2016, former HAIX® CEO Ewald Haimerl purchased the New Lenox Snorkel and it had quite the journey from the U.S. to Germany. First, the it traveled 1200 miles from Illinois to the Port of Charleston, South Carolina. Due to its size and low gas mileage, the 31-gallon engine had to make multiple stops for fuel during the trip through the Appalachian Mountains. There were also several police checks along the way and not just because it was traveling slower than normal traffic, but also because of the sheer magnitude of the truck. Once it reached Charleston, the truck was transported by ship across the Atlantic to Bremerhaven, Germany where it was stuck in customs for a week before it made the 7-hour trek to its final home at the HAIX® headquarters in Mainburg. Extensive restoration work was done on the vehicle to make it fully functional today.

The most eye-catching model in his collection is a GMC pumper, built in 1942, and originally commissioned on a U.S. airbase in Sweden. The vehicle is the oldest in the HAIX® Oldtimer Fleet. The pumper was in use on a U.S. Air Base in the north of Sweden for over 30 years. After a long break at a used car dealer, HAIX® breathed new life into this convertible truck. With the top open, it is the star of photo shoots at trade shows and other HAIX® events.

The Ford TK, which was built in 1949, has been part of the HAIX Oldtimer Fleet since the end of 2018. Before that, it was used as a promotional vehicle for an insurance company in Georgia. However, most of the passengers are carried by the Opel Blitz, built in 1965. There is space for eleven people in the small light fire engine LLF, including the driver.

In addition to the four fire engines, the HAIX old-timer fleet also includes two police vehicles which are considered “Young Timers” due to when they were manufactured. These include a Chevrolet Impala 300 SS police car from 1995 and a 1993 Harley Davidson police motorcycle, which also had an impressive journey to Germany.

Officers from the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) originally took possession of the Chevrolet and initially used it as a backup patrol car before it was taken out of service. It was then chauffeured to the Swiss honorary consul in Zurich. Later, it came to the U.S. consulate in Munich under private ownership, until it finally found its way to HAIX® in Mainburg. The comfort of the old vehicle and the sirens are always a big hit at area events.

HAIX® continues to preserve the history of vintage and classic fire trucks and police vehicles and hopes to add to this fleet in the future!

Former New Lenox FPD Snorkel


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3-Alarm fire in Stone Park, 9-5-20 (more)

More from the 3-Alarm fire in Stone Park, 9-5-20

Excerpts from

A dozen families were left homeless Saturday after winds fueled a fire that destroyed four residential buildings in the 1800 block of 36th Avenue in Stone Park. By the time the firefighters arrived, three buildings were already in flames. A dozen families – some with young children – were left homeless. 

Investigators believe the fire started on a wooden back porch of one unit. They say winds fueled it, and that quickly made flames jump from one building to the next.

flames from detached garage on fire

Tim Olk photo

hitting hot spots after a fire

Tim Olk photo

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Chicago Fire Department news (more)

Excerpts from

Aldermen advanced an agreement Thursday that would give Chicago firefighters $95 million in back pay, but puts off fraught negotiations over how fire stations should be staffed.

Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2 ratified the tentative agreement with 76% of the vote, chief labor attorney for the city James Franczek told members of the City Council’s Workforce Development Committee, which unanimously endorsed the deal. The full city council is set to vote on the deal Wednesday.

The deal is retroactive to July 1, 2017, when the last labor agreement between the city and the firefighters union expired, and will last until June 30, 2021. The deal calls for firefighters to get a 10% raise during the term of the agreement, in keeping with pay hikes won by other unions that represent city workers.

In return for annual pay hikes ranging from 2% to 2.25% through Jan. 1, 2022, both retired and active duty firefighters will contribute more toward their health care coverage, saving the city $10 million during the duration of the agreement. The deal also calls for the city to expand its fleet of ambulances from 75 to 80, additional protective gear for firefighters, and up to two additional days of vacation for firefighters with more than 25 years of service.

The deal does not change a rule that requires every piece of fire equipment to be staffed by at least five employees. The agreement calls for the current staffing requirements to stay in place until Jan. 1, 2022.

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Box Alarm fire in Mundelein, 9-2-20 (more)

More photos and audio from the Box Alarm fire in Mundelein, 9-2-20

Pierce Impel quint at fire scene

Larry Shapiro photo

aftermath of a fire in a strip mall

Larry Shapiro photo

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