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City unveils new ladder truck
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LADDER 1 - photo by Photo by: Reed Vanderpool
The Smithville Volunteer Fire Department has unveiled its new ladder truck.The truck arrived last Wednesday evening, and has been displayed at the Education Celebration downtown on Friday, at the DeKalb Community Bank Fun Day Saturday, and at the city council meeting Monday night.Fire Chief Charlie Parker told the Review Saturday that the truck should be a benefit to the city for many reasons.“It helps to bring down our ISO rating, which will bring down insurance rates in the city,” Parker said. “It will also allow us to reach places at some of the factories and downtown areas that we could not get to before.”The new truck, christened Ladder 1, will require some equipment, such as hoses and nozzles, to be installed before being officially put into service, but should be ready for action soon.Parker said many of city firefighters have already had training on an aerial truck, and instructors will be brought in to help the department make the most of the vehicle.The city now has three fire trucks in the fleet. The arrival of the truck, a Pierce Impel 75-foot aerial ladder truck with a 1,750 gallon per minute pump and a 500-gallon tank, is the culmination of a process which began in May, when the board of aldermen adopted a recommendation by Chief Parker to accept a bid from EVS-Midsouth, Inc of Memphis for the vehicle.The board, following the recommendation of former mayor Taft Hendrixson, voted to appropriate the money for the truck from the city’s general reserves.The city then made a $250,000 down payment as called for in the bid put forth by EVS-Midsouth, and paid the remaining $496,305 upon delivery.The truck cost $746,305 in total.