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CAFMA christens new $1.2M ladder truck

Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority personnel christen their brand new ladder truck by splashing water onto it during a dedication ceremony Wednesday, Oct. 24. The water used was taken from the agency’s old ladder truck to symbolize a transfer of responsibility. (Max Efrein/Courier)

Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority personnel christen their brand new ladder truck by splashing water onto it during a dedication ceremony Wednesday, Oct. 24. The water used was taken from the agency’s old ladder truck to symbolize a transfer of responsibility. (Max Efrein/Courier)

The Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority (CAFMA) officially replaced its sole ladder truck with a brand new one Wednesday, Oct. 24.

The truck is a 2018 Rosenbauer that carries 350 gallons of water and has a 1,500-gallon-per-minute pump. It is equipped with a 104-foot aerial platform that allows firefighters to attack fires from above in difficult to reach places (such as on large buildings) and assist in rescue operations.

“This is an important piece of equipment,” said CAFMA Fire Chief Scott Freitag.

The old truck needed to be replaced due to high mileage and age, he said. “It just got to a point where we couldn’t maintain (the old truck) anymore.”

In order to maximize their usage, fire apparatus with high mileage are moved to slower stations, put into reserve status, auctioned off or donated to departments in need of fire apparatus.

In this case, the old truck was sold to a company that will likely scrap it, Freitag said. “If they want to try to rebuild it and sell it to somebody else, they’ve got a lot of work to do.”

Earlier this year, CAFMA purchased two brand new type-1 fire engines for about $430,000 each. This ladder truck by itself cost $1.2 million. All of that money came from the agency’s capital reserve fund.

“We have a 10-year plan for these, and that plan is updated every year,” Freitag said. As is now customary for CAFMA, the new engine was subjected to a recently-adopted dedication ceremony Wednesday at Fire Station 50 in Prescott Valley, where it will be housed.

Crew representation from all three of station 50’s shifts (A, B and C) as well as CAFMA chiefs, retirees and attendees from the public transferred water in custom leather fire buckets from the old truck 50 to the new one. The new truck was then christened with water from the old truck. Personnel then helped push the new truck into quarters for its first time in service.

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