Members of the Two Harbors City Council received a surprise tour of the new engine added to the Two Harbors Fire Department during a meeting Monday, Dec. 16.
The apparatus, which replaced a 27-year-old truck, was built by Custom Fire, a manufacturer based in Osceola, Wis. Fire Chief Mark Schlangen gave an overview of the new engine.
"One of the challenges is that we expect our apparatus to have a 25-year service life, so everyone on the committee is hoping it will serve longer than what we’re probably going to be serving," Schlangen said. "One of the driving forces is that we wanted to have everything attainable by one firefighter to deploy. So if only one firefighter can do something, then with two we can do it even safer."
Schlangen said he wanted to be sure all equipment on the new apparatus was reachable at ground level.
"The only reason you'd have to go on top of the truck is to wrap up the hose, so you wouldn't have to do that in unsafe conditions, only once the job is done," Schlangen said.
The new engine has been in service for about a month, and Schlangen said it's been a boon so far.
"As with any new vehicle, there are some little changes to get used to, but we're very happy with it," he said.
This was Two Harbors’ first fire truck ordered through a newly adopted process known as HGACBuy Cooperative. According to the company's website, HGACBuy is a "nationwide, government procurement service striving to make the governmental procurement process more efficient." Schlangen said the process went smoothly.