Chief requests new fire truck

  • Thursday, January 2, 2014

As the city looks to add two new fire stations in 2015, it will need one more fire truck.

That’s according information presented by Goose Creek Fire Chief Steve Chapman at a Dec. 12 Goose Creek City Council workshop.

“We only need one (new) fire apparatus for the new facilities,” City Administrator Dennis Harmon said.

The Class “A” pumper will go in Station 3 once that building is operational. The city has spoken to American LaFrance about building the apparatus.

Chapman said the department currently uses two American LaFrance ladder trucks.

The company was once located in Jedburg but has relocated off U.S.-52 near Sea Fox boats, Chapman said. The company’s administrative offices are located off Cypress Gardens Road.

“Since they’re neighbors, they approached us with a deal to save us probably $25,000,” Chapman said. “They don’t want a competitor in their backyard.”

The current offer is $7,500 off the base price and a two-year bumper-to-bumper warranty.

“One year bumper-to-bumper is good, two years is unheard of,” Chapman said.

The first payment would be due one year after delivery. The company would like to take the truck to two company trade shows before delivery.

The truck will be built to GCFD’s specifications.

“Will this be equipped?” Mayor Michael Heitzler asked.

“No,” Chapman said. “We’re looking at purchasing a basic pumper.”

“What’s the downside?” Councilmember Jerrry Tekac asked.

“I don’t really see one,” Chapman said. “Other vendors’ base price for the truck we want is going to be $400,000.”

The truck would be delivered in mid-2014, if approved by council.

“Do we need it a year ahead of time?” Councilmember Franklin Moore asked.

“No, but we can train on it and be familiar with it when we move in to Station 3,” Chapman said.

“How are you going to pay for it?” Moore asked.

Harmon said he recommends cash, but the 2.8 percent interest rate available is not bad for a piece of equipment. Using cash would still save money, he added.

“Their proximity to the city has been a tremendous advantage,” Chapman said. “We’ve been able to get parts sometimes that day. The next closest fire truck manufacturing center is Greenville.”

Moore asked to see quotes from other companies in writing.

“We will have to sit down with their engineers and spec out the speculations,” Chapman said.

“They are unique,” Heitzler said. “It’s not like going to look at a Chevy Malibu.”

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