Firefighters fix own equipment
Lake Forest, IL, firefighters saved the city $47,000 when they decided two years ago to rebuild an ailing fire truck and build a new pumper using the, vehicle’s serviceable parts.
The Lake Forest Fire Department’s firefighters and paramedics did the work themselves instead of spending $130,000 to hire mechanics and buy new equipment.
In 1982 the department’s pumper needed body and part replacements. However, the motor and pump were both functional. They also had a 22-year-old ladder truck, which needed a new motor.
The firefighters solved the problem by installing the pumper’s motor in the ladder truck. They then bought a new cab, frame, and engine for the pumper, and installed the vehicle’s still working pump.
In addition to the savings to the city, the project also served as a morale booster for the department, according to Chief Edward Burns. “Working together to design the way the equipment would be carried really pulled people together.”