Archive for December 25th, 2021

New ambulance for the Lansing FD (more)

From Fire Service, Inc.:

Congratulations to Chief Chad Kooyenga and the members of the Lansing Fire Department in Illinois on the recent delivery of their new Wheeled Coach custom Type I ambulance. This unit was built on a Ford F-550 4×2 chassis and came equipped with a custom Liquid Spring suspension system. This was a welcome addition to their fleet and will provide years of reliable service to the residents. We appreciate the business from this long time Fire Service Inc. customer.

New Wheeled Coach Type 1 ambulance for the Lansing Fire Department in Illinois

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North Chicago Fire Department news

From North Chicago Firefighters IAFF Local 3271 @IAFF3271:

Funeral announcement for the passing of North Chicago FD Firefighter Keith Peacy

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Evanston Fire Department history Part 51

From Phil Stenholm:

Another installment about History of Evanston Fire Department



The first major fire to occur during the Dorband administration was at the Tapecoat Company chemical plant at 1521 Lyons Street, on a frigid day in January 1951. Located on a dead-end street in the 5th ward, just east of the C&NW RR Mayfair Division freight tracks, Tapecoat manufactured high-strength tape and chemical coatings used to seal commercial pipeline connections. Fire departments didn’t think much about hazardous materials in 1951, but if the Tapecoat fire occurred today, it might require a HazMat response.
Evanston firefighters contained the blaze, but not before an estimated $100,000 damage to the structure and its contents. The $100,000 loss was one of the top five highest-dollar losses from a fire in Evanston’s history up to that point in time, with only the fires at the N. U. Technological Institute (December 1940), Boltwood School (January 1927), the Marshall Field warehouse (December 1948), and the Mark Manufacturing Company plant (December 1905) sustaining greater dollar losses. Of course the Mark fire was many times worse than the others, because two Evanston firemen lost their lives battling that blaze.      

In the summer of 1952, one of the platoon drillmasters and a handful of new recruits manned the EFD’s soon-to-be scrapped 1917 / 1930 Seagrave Suburbanite 500 / 50 TCP (Engine No. 6) one last time for old time’s sake, as the venerable engine pumped for two days straight and delivered thousands of gallons of water onto a stubborn, smelly, stinking, smoldering fire located deep within the bowels of the city dump at 2100 Oakton St. The dump would be re-developed as a landfill recreation area known as James Park in 1965, featuring a picnic area, baseball diamonds, soccer fields, and the famous “Mount Trashmore.”  

With a virtual flotilla of new Pirsch rigs — Truck 21 (1951 Pirsch 85-foot TDA), Truck 22 (1952 Pirsch 85-foot TDA), Engine 21 (1952 Pirsch 1000 / 80 TCP), Engine 25 (1952 Pirsch 1000 / 100 TCP), and Squad 21 (1952 Pirsch 1000 / 100 combination pumper – rescue squad) — running out of Fire Station # 1 beginning in September 1952, the former Engine No. 1 – the 1949 Seagrave Model J-66 1000 / 80 TCP — was relocated to Station # 2, where it became Engine 22.

The two 1937 Seagrave Model G-80 750 / 80 TCPs remained in front-line service in the same places they had been located previously, but with a new 20-series prefix number assigned, such that Engine No. 3 was now Engine 23 at Station # 3, and Engine No. 4 was now Engine 24 at Station # 4.

The 1937 Seagrave 65-foot aerial ladder truck with 80-gallon booster that ran as Truck No. 2 at Station # 1 for 15 years was designated Truck 23, relocated to Station # 3, and placed into ready-reserve, meaning it could be staffed by Engine Co. 23 if a third truck was needed. In fact, you might say Engine Co. 23 was the EFD’s first “jump company”! The dilapidated 1917 Seagrave city service truck — Truck No. 1 1917-24, Truck No. 2 1924-37, placed into reserve as Truck No. 3 in 1938, and assigned briefly to the Evanston Auxiliary Fire Service 1942-44 — was stripped of usable parts and junked. 

The two 1927 Seagrave Standard 1000 / 50 TCPs that had been Engine No. 2 and Engine No. 5 for 25 years were placed into reserve, with old No. 2 becoming Engine 26 at Station # 2 (rig was moved to the new Station # 5 in 1955), and old No. 5 relocating to Station # 4, where it was designated Engine 27. The 1927 Seagrave pumpers were not equipped with radios. The 1917 / 1930 Seagrave Suburbanite 500 / 50 TCP (Engine No. 6) that had been the EFD’s lone spare pumper since 1938 was decommissioned and dismantled at this time.   

The 1924 Seagrave tractor formerly used to pull the old 85-foot aerial-ladder trailer (Truck No.1 1924-51) was retained and rebuilt as a Chicago F. D.-style high-pressure wagon, equipped with a mounted fireboat-type deluge nozzle, and with large-diameter hose carried aboard the rig’s pumper body / hose-bed that had been salvaged from the 1917 / 1930 Seagrave Suburbanite TCP after it was dismantled.

The high-pressure wagon was designated Squad 22 and placed into ready-reserve at Station # 1, where it was available to be driven to a working fire if requested. It was normally parked in the repair shop bay, and in addition to being a high-pressure wagon, it was used by EFD mechanics as a utility truck. Like the two 1927 Seagrave pumpers, Squad 22 was not equipped with a radio.

Also, 6,000 feet of new fire hose was purchased in 1951-52, including 4,000 feet of 2-1/2 inch hose for the front-line pumpers, and 2,000 feet of larger-diameter hose used to supply deluge and master stream nozzles. .

Other equipment added to the EFD’s inventory at this time included four powerful factory-installed searchlights mounted atop Squad 21 that could be used to provide lighting at night-time fires, two portable deluge nozzles and an oxygen-acetylene cutting torch carried aboard Squad 21, and several sets of self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) that replaced the old-fashioned canister-type gas masks that had been used by firefighters for many years. The SCBA however were assigned only to the two truck companies at Station # 1.

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