By Charles Sercombe
Too bad the city’s new fire truck didn’t come a week sooner.
It could have come in handy for the Sterling Oil plant fire.
No matter, though, the Fire Department welcomes new equipment any time. The truck is a standard pumper and cost the city $329,000. It was budgeted two years ago but the order for the truck wasn’t placed until last December.
It was a good thing the city finally placed the order. Since December, the city’s projected finances took a nose dive. Next year the city faces a $1 million budget deficit.
This new truck is not the ladder truck being considered for purchase through a tax increase.
The new truck replaces a 1980 truck that is “rusting out and falling apart,” said Chief Steve Paruk.
Hamtramck’s Fire Department could use several upgrades. Its ladder truck is 33 years old and is need of constant repair.
The two other trucks in the department are 17 and 13 years old respectively. The department has two ambulances, one built in 1999 and one purchased in 2005. The newest ambulance has had so many problems it’s considered a “lemon.”
For the past week firefighters have been training on the new truck, and it is now ready for service.