After nearly six years of discussion and planning, the Village of Menands Fire Department has purchased a new fire truck to be delivered around October 2015, which will replace the older and out-dated models in use.
Discussions began before Mayor Megan Grenier came into office, but continued in October 2012, when Grenier met with Fire Chief Donald Handerhan and Menands fire department officials to fully consider the logistics behind purchasing a new truck. Budgeting was taken into account, along with the needs of the fire department.
“I also met with the mechanic who services our fleet, who explained, amongst other things, that with the age of our trucks, some parts are no longer available and have to be retrofitted, creating additional costs for repairs,” Grenier said in a message released with the Activities Newsletter in mid-November.
The three current trucks are decades old, two from the 1980s and one from 1990. The new truck will replace the two older models, reducing the Menands Company fleet from three to two trucks.
A new truck committee was formed in April 2013 to move the plans from the discussion stage. Demonstrations were given from several manufacturers, as well as sidebyside comparisons to ensure the Menands Fire Company received a truck that suited its needs. Perhaps the most pressing factor in the purchase of the new truck was the layout of the Fire Department’s facilities.
“We have a unique situation where the firehouse bay doors are smaller than normal. It has to be a specific length and size truck,” said Grenier. “Demo trucks came down to make sure they could fit in the garage. And [department members] were considering a bucket or a straight ladder to see what was best for the Menands Fire Department.”
After two years of discussion to finalize which company best suited the department’s needs, Village officials chose a model from Sutphen manufacturer, opting for a truck with a pump and ladder that will allow the fire department to sell the two older trucks
The funds for the new model came from a bond approved by the Menands Village Board, as well as the money gained from the sale of the two current trucks.
“The truck that we’re purchasing acts as two trucks, but with the same capabilities that we had before,” Grenier said, adding that the reduction in the fleet will have no effect on the fire department’s work.
The lengthy time taken to consider this purchase, as well as the purchase itself, was necessary to ensure the safety of the Menands Fire Department and “that of the public,” Grenier said.
“It was due diligence to make sure this was done properly,” she said.