Released By Osceola County Community Outreach/Public Information Office
Ceremonies for two new squad trucks that will enhance public safety were held earlier this month in District 5 at Station 53, south of St. Cloud and in District 1 at Station 73 in Reunion.
The new apparatuses represent a $500,000 investment in public safety. The 2019 Pierce Velocity Chassis’ feature a 1,500-gallon-per-minute pump, 1,000 gallon water tank, and have been specially designed to carry the full complement of firefighting equipment as well as the equipment necessary for technical rescue incidents. It will also mean lower maintenance costs, as they replace older models with more than 300,000 miles on the odometer and 14 years of service.
“It’s important to me that our lives, homes and property are safe. That’s why it is vital that our first responders have the best training, best facilities and best equipment,” said Fred Hawkins, Jr., the District 5 County Commissioner. “I think the residents in District 5 can be proud that this resource will be serving them for many years to come. This continues the County’s efforts to make sure our first-responders are ready for any emergency.”
“Developing a first-rate fire service is important to the health and safety of our residents. This squad is another vital tool for our first responders and another sign of the County’s commitment to providing the best training, best facilities and best equipment,” said Peggy Choudhry, the District 1 County Commissioner. “I think the residents and visitors in Reunion and District 1 can be proud that we are adding another resource to the community on the heels of this new station – and a commitment for more staff here as approved in this year’s budget. It is part of my pledge to you since taking office to make sure that our first-responders are ready for any emergency.”
Osceola Fire Rescue displayed the time-honored traditions of the fire service with “Push-Back” ceremonies. The first part of the ceremonies involved washing, then drying off the new equipment. Then firefighters pushed the new vehicles into the firehouses, a tradition that dates back to the 19th century when horses could not properly back into the station with the wagon attached.
“The ceremonies of transferring from old to new allows us as a department to honor our history and while embracing change and progress as we prepare for new challenges,” said Chief Larry Collier. “Now with these squad trucks the men and women of Osceola County Fire Rescue have valuable tools readily available to serve the community in a timely and efficient manner.”