The Town of High River is in for a new fire truck.

With a $1.4 million price tag, High River's newest ladder truck is actually a steal of a deal.

Fire Chief Cody Zebedee is grateful for the purchase and the deal they got on it.

"We ended up coming across the unique opportunity for a replacement ladder truck. Our current ladder truck is near the end of its life span at 20 years old and will be rolling into 21 years fairly soon. Life expectancy on those trucks is about 20 years. We could have applied for our current vehicle to be inspected and certified for use for another five years but one of our vendors had this new one come up."

"Originally this truck was being leased by another community who had to return it with very minimal use, so it was available for sale and the deal on it created significant cost savings. The total ask we went to Council for was $1.45 million," says Zebedee

These trucks now come with a price tag closer to $1.6 - $1.8 million if they're new, and according to Zebedee, the cost for this truck won't come from taxpayers' pockets.

"Like our peace officer vehicles, we were able to allocate the funding from the vehicle from MSI funding which is a provincial grant."

The new ladder truck has a 25 ft longer truck, with the ability to operate on narrower streets, or streets with vehicles on either side.

Zebedee says another positive is the higher water pressure.

"One of the big key differences is it has a larger fire pump on it, and a platform or basket on the end of the ladder, and that significantly increases firefighters safety and our ability to operate on different roof pitches."

A truck like this would come in handy for rescues or fires from buildings like the Medicine Manor Seniors home, or the Bob Snodgrass Recreation Complex, and in certain situations allow for fighting fires from the truck rather than sending firefighters into the buildings or onto the roofs.

The old vehicle will be sold as the maintenance costs will begin to increase with the age of the vehicle, but equipment will be transferred to the new truck, in hopes to save some costs there.

Zebedee is hopeful the new ladder truck will arrive in early January and be in service shortly after.


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