New fire truck goes into service in Homewood

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New fire truck goes into service in Homewood

August 28, 2018 - 21:44
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  Homewood village officials admire the new fire 
  truck received by the fire department last week. 
  (Photo by Eric Crump/H-F Chronicle)
 
The Homewood Fire Department put a new pumper truck into service on August 28.
 
The Pierce Enforcer arrived on Aug. 21, and firefighters spent about a week training on it before it went into duty.
 
“(The firefighters) love it,” Fire Chief Bob Grabowski said. "We’re excited to have it. It’s been a long time coming.”
 
The purchase was approved by the village board in September 2017. It was purchased from Global Emergency Products for $596,897. The village saved money buying it through the Houston-Galveston Area Council, a cooperative purchasing program.
 
The truck replaces a 21-year-old Smeal pumper. Grabowski told trustees the department plans for trucks to have 20-year replacement cycles. After that point, repairs become extremely costly. 
 
The department’s ambulances have 10-year replacement cycles. 
 
The new pumper has a Detroit Diesel 500-horsepower motor, a 1,500-gallon per minute pump for hooking up to hydrants and a 750-gallon tank. Grabowski said the truck also has more than 1,000 feet of supply and attack hose in a low-level bed, making it easier for firefighters to remove. Hose can be pulled at street level rather than from the top of the truck as in older models. 
 
The Homewood Fire Department purchased a Pierce ladder truck in 2011, Grabowski said. That vehicle will be the sister truck to the new vehicle. 
 
“My past history over the years with Pierce (proves) the quality of their workmanship of the vehicles themselves,” Grabowski said. “Of all the manufacturers out there, we think this is the highest quality vehicle that you can get.”
 
The chief said some of the more significant upgrades, compared to the previous pumper, are safety-related. 
 
“Back 20 years ago, not everything was locked down. Today, everything is either locked down or in a drawer or cabinet or locked down to the truck, itself,” he said. “God forbid we’re ever in an accident, but we won’t have anything flying around.” 
 
It also has a lower height and smaller wheelbase, making it easier to get into alleys and onto side streets.
 
“It’s not quite as bulky as the other truck was,” Grabowski explained.