The Smithfield Fire Department, which recently received delivery of a new 2019 Smeal 100 foot platform ladder truck, will keep the old ladder truck that it replaces. At the request of Fire Chief John Blanton, members of the Smithfield Town Council unanimously approved a request to keep the 1991 model E-One 75 foot ladder truck as a spare.
Due to the frequency of fire trucks going out of service for maintenance and breakdowns, Chief Blanton said keep and maintaining the 28 year-old ladder truck will help the department be better prepared in case of an emergency. The spare truck will be kept at Station 2 in West Smithfield.
Blanton said the value of keeping the truck would outweigh any financial gain of selling the emergency vehicle. The Department of Insurance gives credit for having a reserve aerial fire truck and the extra credit would benefit the department in keeping the fire insurance rating as low as possible for residential and commercial property owners.
The council also approved a request from Chief Blanton to remove Engine 2 – a 2003 American LaFrance fire truck – from its fleet. Engine 2 has been out of service since July 27, 2019 due to computer and electronic issues. Maintenance personnel are unsure when or if the repairs can be completed. In the last 3 years, the department has spent $19,905.87 in maintenance on Engine 2, the second highest amount of any emergency vehicle in the fleet. Blanton said Engine 2 will remain out of service and used for parts for another American LaFrance fire truck – Engine 1 – that is still in operation. Once Engine 1 is removed from service, both Engine 1 and 2 will be surplused.