Apparatus & Equipment, Technical Rescue

Pierce Delivers Heavy-Duty Rescue Tiller to OR Fire Department

Pierce Manufacturing, an Oshkosh Corporation (NYSE:OSK) company, delivered a heavy-duty rescue vehicle unlike any in the company’s history. Built for the Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) Department in Portland, Oregon, the apparatus is built on a tiller configuration, except that the rig features a heavy-duty crane — instead of an aerial ladder — mounted directly behind the cab. The heavy-duty crane is manufactured by Iowa Mold Tooling (IMT), an Oshkosh Corporation Company. In addition, PF&R has ordered a Pierce 100-foot medium-duty tiller vehicle.

“With multiple earthquake faults in the region, the new Pierce heavy-duty rescue tiller crane was built to support urban search and rescue operations, including a large scale emergency,” said Tony Snook, firefighter at the PF&R and 21-year veteran of Heavy Rescue Squad 1, who led the department’s development of the vehicle. “The new apparatus carries an IMT heavy-duty rescue crane mounted directly behind the cab on the tractor, and the trailer becomes, in effect, a huge heavy rescue body. We’re a specialized heavy rescue team built for just that — tough rescue challenges.”

“Over its long history, Pierce has proven, time and again, that the company’s custom engineering and manufacturing capabilities are second to none. This heavy rescue, utilizing a crane from IMT, is one more superb example,” said Jim Johnson, Oshkosh Corporation executive vice president and president, Fire & Emergency. “Our nation’s first responders need specialized vehicles to meet the challenges they face, and we are proud to have earned this opportunity to provide two tillers, including this unique heavy-duty rescue, for one of this country’s leading departments.”

When placed into service, the heavy-duty rescue tiller with aerial crane will respond to a wide range of emergencies throughout the tight and congested areas of Portland, including trench rescues, confined space rescues, tunnel collapses, and more. The vehicle is built on a Pierce Arrow XT™ chassis with a 16-inch raised roof cab and seating for six firefighters. The vehicle, with a GVWR of 74,300 lbs., features Pierce’s exclusive TAK-4® independent suspension on both the front axle and the rear tiller trailer. The IMT articulated crane is built by Pierce sister company, IMT. The body features 15 compartments with a wide array of slide-out and tilting trays, shelves, and toolboards for rescue equipment, compressors and hydraulic hoses.

The second apparatus is a 100-foot medium duty aerial tiller built on the Arrow XT chassis. It features a raised roof cab, seating for six firefighters, watertight sealed compartments, an array of slide-out trays and toolboards, LED floodlights and spotlights, both backboard and stokes basket storage, 11 ground ladders ranging from 12 to 45 feet long, and a 100-foot medium-duty aerial ladder.

PF&R is Oregon’s largest fire and emergency services provider.  The department provides an extensive range of public safety services including fire prevention, public education, response to fire, medical, and other emergency incidents, and disaster mitigation. PF&R operates 30 engine companies, nine truck companies, two fireboats, a heavy-duty rescue, two specialized units for Chemical and Biological, Radiological/Nuclear and Explosive (CBRNE) response, a Pierce custom mobile command center, and a specialized unit for Hazardous Materials (HazMat). 

Pierce dealer, Hughes Fire Equipment, Inc., of Springfield, Oregon, provides local service and support.