Marblehead firefighters will soon welcome a new addition to their firefighting fleet: A Pierce pumper tuck.
Fire Chief Jason Gilliland told Marblehead News the apparatus should be in Marblehead before Thanksgiving Day. The chief, in fact, flew to the Pierce factory in Appleton, Wisconsin to inspect the fire truck.
“It’s a good practice, making sure everything checks out and is in order,” Gilliland said, adding except for a few odds and ends that the truck passed muster.
Marblehead voters OK’d up to a $750,000 debt-exclusion override under Article 32 on the 2021 Marblehead Town Meeting warrant to purchase a fire truck.
“The vote was reaffirmed in June of 2021, when voters overwhelmingly [passed]…a debt-exclusion override to borrow $620,000 for the new pumper truck and other related equipment,” Gilliland wrote in the 2021 Marblehead Town Report.
Peirce regularly sent Gilliland photos as their autoworkers assembled the town’s pumper truck. The fire department turnsover trucks based on a replacement schedule in accordance with the National Fire Protection Association, according to Gilliland.
The life expectancy of a pumper ruck is 15 years. The incoming one will replace a 2006 Pierce pumper, and it will feature a back-up camera, direction lights, and a 3.6 kilowatt generator – which can produced enough electricity to power a house. It can hold 500 gallons in its belly and, when hooked up to a fire hydrant, pump 1,500 gallons per minute.
Fire dept. lands nearly $50K in grants
Gilliland and his staff recently captured nearly $50,000 across two grants.
Gilliland, as the town’s emergency preparedness director, secured a $44,580 grant for the purchase and installation of a backup generator at the Jacobi Community Center, which the town endeavors to outfit with the necessary equipment to become a community shelter. Once all is in order, Gilliand said the Humphrey Street center would join the Veterans Middle School as a second Marblehead shelter.
“That’ll help us for cooling centers and situations such as that to allow that facility to be part of our inventory to keep people safe,” Marblehead Town Administrator Thatcher Kezer told Marblehead Select Board members.
And the other grant a $5,100 award to purchase ballistic vests and helmets for when firefighters – who are emergency medical technicians – assist police officers during a shooter incident.
“If there is some type of bad incident shooter incident, obviously the police are the ones who go in and deal with it,” Kezer said. “The firefighters come in, in order to take care of victims and casualties and such.”
He added, “This provides some additional protection for the firefighters that are going to be close to the hot zone, so they can be immediately available to provide medical assistance and such.”