State-of-the-Art Equipment to Elevate Firefighter Safety

Elite Fire Apparatus, Inc. Awarded Thirty-Seven Unit Contract

Montgomery County Fire Chief Tom Carr is pleased to announce that the Montgomery County (Maryland) Fire and Rescue Service (MCFRS) has selected and awarded Elite Fire Apparatus, Inc. of Tilleda, Wisconsin a contract to provide several dozen new fire engines to the existing emergency apparatus fleet. "This is a tremendous step in assuring that our first responders are equipped to assure operational efficiency utilizing the latest in safety technology when called to handle a myriad of hazards," says Chief Carr. "Under the direction of Assistant Chief Steve Lohr, the Apparatus Committee comprised of career and volunteer members, worked tirelessly focusing on the latest technology in order to support our life-safety mission."

Thirty-seven (37) like-pumpers are being ordered to carry the all-hazard mission of the Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service (MCFRS) into the future. The cost per unit will be about $435,000 each. These units are proposed with a Spartan Gladiator severe duty cab and chassis, aluminum body, HALE Q-Max pump with CAFSPRO, a 750 gallon booster tank, two-twenty-five gallon foam cells and a 5-KW diesel generator. In addition, these pieces of apparatus are to be manufactured using a low profile "L"-shaped water tank with a rear suction that maximizes hose capacity and accessibility for working around and on the rigs without unnecessary climbing.

Each unit will have six (6) pre-connects, dual large diameter hose (LDH) supply beds, a wagon pipe, and a pre-connected blitz-fire mechanism. Two (2) quick-throw ground ladders and two (2) hard sleeves will be accessible from the rear without climbing onto the unit. Further, it is being designed to maintain all of the features of the high volume Q-max pump while adding the compressed air foam system (CAFS) capability that local firefighters have helped to evaluate over the past several years.

These units will be equipped with the latest technologies available to assure the safety of the crew cab occupants while entering, exiting, and riding in the vehicles. Special emphasis is provided for securing all portable equipment including personal running gear, quick access EMS compartments, and crew cab storage (climate controlled) areas for drugs and narcotics. All compartments will be lockable for enhanced security. The latest generation L-E-D lighting packages will be resident along with the Federal Q2B and Power Call Sirens. To assure regional compatibility units will be lettered with the Metropolitan Washington Area Council of Government (COG) numbering system on five sides of the vehicle. The latest generation braking, auxiliary braking, suspension and power train components will be in place to assure rugged dependability and safety.

To maximize visibility and highway safety, a lime yellow and red, chevron barricade reflective trim graphics package will be included on the rear of each unit. In addition red and white, rub rail conspicuity tape will also be included for unparalleled visibility.

This announcement has been anticipated for several months and requisite contract requirements were met in early January 2007. A single prototype unit will be built in less than six months and delivered by the summer of 2007.

The first unit will have a MCFRS Training Academy graphics package and will serve not only as a 'model' pumper, but will function as the 'hands-on' training and systems evaluation rig while construction begins on the remaining 36 units. This particular engine will introduce the entire Montgomery County career and volunteer membership to the various operational systems and more specifically with the associated training components necessary to take full advantage of the CAFS.

Elite Fire Apparatus, Inc. intends to deliver approximately six (6) units every four (4) months so that in about 24 months from now every first-line MCFRS engine company will be operating with a full featured, precisely equipped modern pumper engine.

The Montgomery County (MD) Fire and Rescue Service (MCFRS) is a full spectrum life safety agency protecting nearly 1 million people who live and work in Maryland's most populous jurisdiction. Under the direction of the County Fire Chief, the MCFRS is a combination system (career/volunteer) in the suburban Washington, D.C. area, operating with an annual budget of about $195 million. The MCFRS annually handles about 100,000 emergency calls for service and is staffed by nearly 1200 career uniformed personnel and professional civilian staff and an equal number of volunteers, nearly half of whom are actively involved in emergency response.