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Falls City firefighters: pumper truck needs replaced
07/19/2018

(KLZA)-- During the Monday evening Falls City Council meeting, members of the Falls City  Volunteer Fire Department presented information to the Council concerning the City's  37-year-old pumper truck. 

Fire Fighter Jon McQueen, who is the Public Information Officer for the department presented the information.  McQueen says the Fire Department is very concerned about safety for citizens and fire fighters when responding to a fire call with the current truck.

McQueen also noted the  Department is reviewing the age of all of the trucks and ways to replace them in the future. 

The National Fire Protection Association recommends fire trucks be replaced every 20 years.  With the responsibility of responding to fires, saving lives and protect property, it takes special equipment to do this. 

The longtime member of the volunteer department reviewed some of the issues with the current pumper truck which include concerns about the hydraulic lines, the cylinders that move the ladders and an outdated air system that will not work with the air-mask equipment now used by the  Falls City Rural Fire Department. 

Like everything else, a new pumper truck with an 85-foot boom could cost  three-quarters-of-a-million dollars or more. McQueen noted that it would be possible to save some money if you could purchase a demonstrator truck that might not be exactly what you have on your wish list, but could save money. 

With only a few places producing the pumper trucks it is unlikely you would be able to purchase anything less than an 8-foot boom. Currently there are four trucks in production in Nebraska and they should all be completed by the end of this year.  McQueen estimated it would take a year to get a truck built once you placed on order.  

Wednesday, July 25 a demonstrator pumper truck will be in  Falls City for officials to take a look at and compare new technology with 37-year-old equipment. The Fire Department invited Mayor Jerry Oliver, Council members and those seek seats on the Council and Mayor to come to the demonstration and go up in the current pumper truck and the demonstrator.   

During his presentation McQueen listed a large number of buildings in and around Falls City requiring this type of fire truck be available, including the Grand Weaver Hotel which is now offering permanent homes,  churches, downtown buildings and the CGB facility on the south edge of town. 

McQueen did note the troubles with the current pumper truck in fighting a fire in downtown Falls City this past January.  

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