Archive for January 8th, 2013

Barrington Box Alarm 1-8-13

The Barrington & Countryside FPD received a call reporting a barn fire this afternoon at 544 Penny Road in Barrington Hills. The vacant barn is on the Cook County Forest Preserve property behind a vacant house which used to be occupied by a caretaker. The structure was fully involved when the first Barrington companies arrived, and the alarm was upgraded immediately to a box alarm for water tankers and additional personnel.

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The structure went down quickly and no exposures were threatened. Five tankers shuttled water to the scene. Departments with tankers were Long Grove, Palatine Rural, East Dundee, Wauconda, and Bartlett. Engines came from Carpentersville, Lake Zurich, Algonquin-Lake in the Hills, Hoffman Estates, and Fox River Grove. Palatine responded with Quint 81 in addition to Cary Squad 255, Buffalo Grove Ambulance 26, and Arlington Heights Ambulance 1.

Tim Olk, Scott Peterson, and Larry Shapiro all went to the scene and will have images to share.

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Springfield FD adding small squads

The Springfield Fire Department has placed an order with Alexis for two small squad on Ford F-550 chassis to chase the ambulances and reduce wear and tear on the larger apparatus. The StateJournal Register has an article which includes the following excerpts:

The Springfield Fire Department plans to add smaller rescue vehicles to its fleet this year to respond to medical calls.

Fire Chief Ken Fustin said the smaller vehicles, called “squads,” will extend the life of the department’s larger, more expensive fire engines and trucks. About 60 percent of the department’s calls are medical-related.

Aldermen approved the purchase of two rescue vehicles during last year’s budget process. The department bought two 2012 Ford F550chassis from Landmark Ford and is having custom-built rescue bodies installed by Alexis Fire Equipment, which submitted the lowest bid. Total cost: $200,822.

Fustin has requested $125,000 in next year’s budget for an additional rescue vehicle. He hopes to have all three in use by the end of December.

Fire trucks and engines will then respond to 4,000 to 5,000 fewer calls annually, he said.

The fire department answered 16,431 calls for service in 2011, according to a recent fire station relocation study. About 58 percent, or 9,527, were medical calls.

The entire article is HERE.

Springfield Fire Department orders small rescue

Small rescue body being built for the Springfield Fire Department by Alexis. Alexis photo

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Des Plaines looks at buying Lake Zurich tower ladder

In November, we posted an article which stated the intention of the Lake Zurich Fire Department to sell their Pierce tower ladder. The Journal Topics Newspaper (online) and the Daily Herald have articles about the Des Plaines Fire Department‘s interest in purchasing the tower ladder.

A Journal Topics article from last Thursday stated:

Members of a Des Plaines City Council committee tonight (Thursday) will consider the purchase of a fire ladder truck that could fulfill the department’s desire for a replacement vehicle at a much cheaper cost.

… including the possible purchase of a used ladder truck from the Lake Zurich Fire Dept.

“The ladder truck that I and many council members would like to replace is a 23-year-old Simon LTI”, said Ald. Walsten. “This ladder truck is in poor condition. The manufacturer is out of business so we actually have to have many replacement parts custom manufactured at a great expense, as well as time delay.”

According to Des Plaines Fire Chief Alan Wax, “The current truck is beyond its life cycle and will have to be taken out of service soon.”

A total of $1.4 million for a new Des Plaines Fire Dept. replacement ladder truck was included in the proposed 2013 budget considered by aldermen. The decision to buy a new truck has been put on hold pending the outcome of a study to determine whether two ladder truck companies are necessary in Des Plaines. Even if the decision is to only have one ladder truck operating, this truck is needed as a back-up, said Walsten.

“When Chief Wax informed me about the availability of the Lake Zurich truck, I was ecstatic,” said Walsten. “It’s a 2000 Pierce with 66,000 miles on it. We had a consultant examine the truck and he reported that it was in very good condition.”

Added Walsten, “The cost of the truck, additional equipment that comes with it, and a potential offset for the possible sale or scrapping of the current ladder truck now or in the future puts the total cost to Des Plaines at less than $390,000. This deal is going to save the taxpayers in Des Plaines around $1 million and that is significant.”

The complete article is HERE.

Monday’s Daily Herald’s article says:

The Des Plaines city council tonight will consider spending about $400,000 to buy a used aerial ladder truck from Lake Zurich to replace an aging ladder truck well past its useful life.

The city’s public safety committee this week agreed to recommend the purchase to the city council.

The fire department currently has two ladder trucks in service to cover the east and west sides of town, split by railroad tracks. They city’s 32 at-grade railroad crossings with frequent train traffic make it difficult to respond quickly across town with just one ladder truck, officials say.

The value of the truck is appraised at $10,000 and it’s unlikely any department would purchase it in its current condition, Wax added.

The city has allocated $1.4 million out of its equipment replacement fund in its 2013 budget to purchase a new ladder truck, which would be expected to last 18 years.

In coming months, city officials will be discussing whether the department needs two ladder trucks to be in service at all times. A study commissioned by the city council on that question is pending.

Even if only one ladder truck were operating, Wax said, a reserve truck is needed in case the first breaks down.

Lake Zurich’s truck is 12 years old, but has clocked only 66,000 miles because it was rarely used and is in excellent condition, Wax said.

This complete article is HERE.

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