KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The Knoxville Fire Department unveiled its new heavy rescue fire truck to the media on Thursday, Feb. 4.
Knoxville Mayor Indya Kincannon expressed excitement and gratitude towards the fire department and the firefighters who take care of the equipment. “I am grateful, the residents of the city of Knoxville are grateful, and we can all rest easy knowing that the professionals of KFD are looking out for us,” she said.
The new $929,679 fire truck will replace a 20-year-old truck with almost 200,000 miles that averages about 1,000 service calls a year. This truck is not meant to put out fires, but it will be sent to large fires as the search and rescue crew. It also heads out to car crashes with pinned victims, water rescues and trench collapses.
The heavy rescue truck is bigger than its predecessor, leaving space for trench rescue equipment that would usually have to come in a trailer. Now, it may not cut response time, but it will be able to begin rescues at a faster pace with said equipment stored on the truck.
The lightweight battery powered extrication tools increase the mobility and speed of the first responders to reach the victims in tough situations.
On the back of the truck there will no longer be a ladder to reach the top where equipment is kept, but steps which leads to easier and quicker access. This back is heavier, making it a better anchor to work from rather than a tree or pole.