Lacombe County and the Town of Blackfalds celebrated the commissioning of a rescue/pumper unit last week.
The state-of-the-art rescue/pumper unit, now known as Engine #3, was built by MaxiMetal in Quebec and arrived from Wholesale Fire & Rescue Ltd. out of Calgary.
The total cost of the unit was $572,344, with a $350,000 Alberta Community Partnership (ACP) grant covering the majority of it.
Lacombe County and the Town of Blackfalds split the outstanding amount, each paying $87,000 for the new truck.
“The ACP provides support for communities that demonstrate regional collaboration and capacity building initiatives,” said Reeve Paula Law. “I believe a big reason for our success in receiving the grant funding was our ability to show how well our two communities work together.”
Members of the Blackfalds fire department pushed the new unit into the fire hall to kick off the official commissioning. The tradition of pushing a truck into the station dates to the 1800s, when fire wagons were pulled by horses.
After returning from a fire, the horses would be unhitched and community members would help firefighters push the wagon back into the station.
“Modern motorized units have alleviated the need to be pushed in, but it has become a fire service tradition for new apparatus when placed in service,” said Fire Chief Todd Gustafson.
“The commissioning of Engine #3 is a testament to the collaboration between Lacombe County and the Town of Blackfalds.”
The state of the art rescue/pumper has the capacity to pump 6,000 litres/minute and can deliver water and foam for maximum firefighting capability in both urban and rural settings.
This truck has the ability to respond to various types of emergencies, like motor vehicle collisions, and carries a wide array of equipment to help those in their time of need.
“The welcome addition of Engine #3 to our fleet represents our great partnership with Lacombe County,” said Blackfalds Fire Chief Robert Côté.
“Not only does this allow us to better serve Blackfalds and Lacombe County, but allows us to further support the surrounding communities when the need arises.”
Engine #3 is an important addition to the Blackfalds Fire Department and will help keep the people of Lacombe County, Blackfalds and those who visit and pass through these communities safe for many years to come.