MCFRS News Release

Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service Inks Contract for Dozens of New Fire Apparatus

Crimson Fire Inc., a Spartan Motors Company, of Brandon, South Dakota to deliver 36 State-of-the-Art Fire Engines

Montgomery County Fire Chief Tom Carr has announced that the Montgomery County (Maryland) Fire and Rescue Service (MCFRS) has signed a multi-million dollar contract to complete dozens of new Compressed Air Foam (CAFS) fire engines with Crimson Fire, Inc., of Brandon, South Dakota, a subsidiary of Spartan Motors .

“Crimson Fire, was the successful awardee in a competitive process initiated in March of this year to complete work on at least thirty-six (36) fire department pumpers,” noted Fire Chief Carr.   “This is the next step in our efforts to procure front-line vehicles to carry the all hazard mission of the department into the future.  Within the next year or so every first due engine-company will be operating with a full featured, precisely equipped unit with the latest technologies available to assure the safety of the crew cab occupants while entering, exiting, and riding in the vehicles.”

Thirty-six (36) identical Compressed Air Foam (CAFS) pumper style fire engines are being manufactured on a County-owned Spartan Gladiator severe duty cab and chassis. The total value of this contract is over $11.2 million dollars. These pumper style fire engines are being completed on severe duty, top of the line Spartan Gladiator cabs and chassis. (Montgomery County had previously purchased the Spartan Motors cab and chassis). Crimson Fire, Inc. will manufacture or supply an aluminum pump module and hose body, HALE Q- Max pump with CAFSPRO foam system, a 750 gallon booster tank, two-twenty-five gallon foam cells and a 7.5-KW diesel generator.

“We are exceptionally pleased to have been selected by Montgomery County to supply its new fleet,” said William F. Doebler, vice president of sales and marketing for Crimson.   “Crimson builds some of the strongest, most durable fire apparatus on the market designed to support firefighters with custom vehicles that allow them to be safe and successful at their profession.  We look forward to providing Montgomery County with quality, custom vehicles that will serve them – and the community – well for many years.”

In addition, these pumper style fire engines will be manufactured using a low profile “L”-shaped tank with a rear suction that maximizes hose capacity and accessibility for working on and around the rigs.  Each fire engine will have multiple pre-connects ( attack-lines), dual (hose) supply beds, a wagon pipe (nozzle), and a pre-connected blitz-fire portable master stream (nozzle). Two quick throw ground ladders and two hard sleeves (hose) will be accessible from the rear without climbing. Further, the units are designed to maintain all of the features of the high volume Hale Q-max pump while adding the compressed air foam system (CAFS) capability. CAFS is a combination foam and air firefighting system that local firefighters have helped to assess over the past several years.
These units are equipped with the latest safety features. 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 fire engines are also equipped with the latest generation L-E-D emergency warning light and siren packages. The units will be lettered with the Council of Government (COG) numbering system on five sides of the vehicle. Latest generation braking, auxiliary braking, suspension and power train components will be in place to assure rugged dependability and safety.

A single prototype unit is scheduled to be built in less than ninety (90) days. This first unit will be introduced to serve both as the ‘model’ pumper style fire engine while providing ‘hands-on’ CAFS training for the entire Montgomery County career and volunteer workforce. The MCFRS plans to deliver approximately 8 units every two months so that in about twelve months from now every first-line MCFRS engine company will be operating with a full featured, precisely equipped county-owned modern pumper style fire engine.

The Montgomery County 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  County Fire Chief Tom Carr, the MCFRS is a combination system (career/volunteer), operating 34 community-based fire and rescue stations with a budget of about $190 million and comprised of over 1200 career uniformed personnel and professional civilian staff and almost an equal number of volunteers, nearly half of whom are actively involved in emergency response.

Crimson Fire is a leading manufacturer of custom fire trucks and other rescue vehicles.  A subsidiary of Spartan Motors, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPAR), Crimson Fire is committed to quality, value and innovation.  Drawing on more than 130 years of excellence in fire truck manufacturing, Crimson Fire manufactures a full line of pumpers, rescues, aerials, quick-attack vehicles and other emergency-rescue vehicles from its facilities in Pennsylvania and South Dakota.  For more information, visit