Weymouth, MA – Mayor Robert Hedlund joined Fire Chief Keith Stark, Town officials, and members of the Weymouth Fire Department today to unveil a new $650,000 fire engine for the Department’s fleet. The new engine was among Mayor Hedlund’s first major investments in the Town’s capital needs upon taking office, and is expected to improve the Department’s firefighting capabilities, consistent with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards.
“One of my top priorities as Mayor has been to address the outstanding capital needs of the Town,” said Mayor Robert Hedlund. “Despite the fiscal constraints of the past, our public safety professionals have always strived for excellence. Investing in the Town’s fire and police vehicles is critical to supporting their efforts. This new fire engine is an exciting addition to the fleet, and will further enhance the high level of service and community protection that our Fire Department has achieved.”
The new fire engine is a 2017 Pierce Enforcer™, equipped with a 750-gallon water tank and a pumping capacity of 1,500 gallons per minute. The new vehicle is technologically advanced, meeting the most recent NFPA standards for front-line apparatuses and coming fully-equipped with new fire rescue equipment, including a thermal imaging camera and eDraulic rescue tools (“Jaws of Life”).
The new engine will replace a 2003 model, which will be placed in reserve and provide the Department with a spare pumper, fully-equipped and ready for service when needed. The new apparatus will further allow the Department to fully retire and dispose of a 1986 Mack engine, which currently exceeds the NFPA’s standard age for a spare apparatus by 11 years.
In 2016, when Mayor Hedlund took office, the average age of the Fire Department’s front-line fleet was eight years, and the average age of its reserve fleet was more than 21 years. With the acquisition of this new fire engine, the average age is now slightly more than three years for front-line engines and 16 years for those in reserve. The NFPA standard age for a front-line and spare apparatus are 10 and 20 years, respectively.
“I thank Mayor Hedlund for his commitment to public safety by purchasing this engine for the Department,” said Fire Chief Keith Stark. “The firefighters appreciate the commitment, as well. This new engine will increase our capabilities to protect and serve all residents of Weymouth.”
The purchase of the new fire engine was financed with $650,000 in Free Cash, appropriated by Mayor Hedlund and the Town Council in June of 2016. Financing for the apparatus was part of a larger $5.92 million investment by Mayor Hedlund that same month. The total investment consisted of Free Cash, Host Community Agreement Funds, and borrowing to finance multiple Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) items for the Town’s fire, police, public works, schools, library, and elder services, as well as a contribution to the Town’s Stabilization Fund.
The new apparatus will be stationed at Fire Station 1, located at 195 North Street, which recently received a $200,000 Free Cash appropriation for building renovations, including improvements to its HVAC system, masonry, restrooms, and windows.