The Chewelah Fire Department recently purchased a used Brush Truck to better assist in state wildfires, which they are paid for per day of use.
Brush 102 is a 2000 F450 Ford truck with 90,000 miles. It has a 7.3L Diesel Engine and 4-wheel drive. The truck includes a foam system and 300 gallon water tank. A big bumper and winch will be added to the front as well.
The truck came from Oregon, with transportation provided by the seller, and cost about $48,000 out of the city’s fire department reserve funds. The reserve can only be used toward fire department expenses.
Fire Chief Dave DeVeau said it is a great truck and they could not have hoped for anything better. The truck will make a big difference, he said, when they are called out by the state to fight wildfires this summer and will make the money back that was spent.
Volunteer firefighter Steve Zender said it is much more comfortable than the older truck since it has an air conditioned cab that seats six versus three. He said this is important since they have to travel wherever the fires might be in Washington.
Also, the water tank will no longer have to be emptied for long trips like is needed with the older truck.
The new decals were made by Stickit Signs in Chewelah and DeVeau said he wants to eventually give all the department trucks a clearer identity with more uniform decals.
The truck has already been called to its first fire for DNR (Department of Natural Resources) near Pingston Creek past Kettle Falls. It was a one day fire on Saturday, May 11 and everyone seemed impressed with the truck then, DeVeau said.
The older truck will still be used for local firefighting.
By Kellie Trudeau, The Independent Staff
In This Photo: Chewelah Fire Chief Dave DeVeau with four of over 30 volunteer firefighters (from left to right): David Thompson, David Riske, Aaron Alvarado, Dave DeVeau, Steve Zender.