New County Fire Truck Already in Action


New Fire Truck


The new pumper/tanker fire truck purchased recently by Prowers County has already been out on two recent calls even though it hasn’t been given a ‘personal’ touch for outfitting equipment or decals, according to Staffon Warn, Prowers County Fire Chief.

“We put our order in last February after working with the Prowers County Commissioners on budgeting and what we wanted in a vehicle and it took eight months to build to the specifications we supplied the manufacturer,” he said recently. “The staff will begin to match the space in and on the vehicle with our equipment, making sure it’s laid out to save us time once we’re at our response site,” Warn added.

The new pumper/tanker has a 3,000 gallon capacity water tank and can pump at a rate of 1,600 gallons per minute. It’s essentially a fire truck with a large capacity tank, equipped with hoses as well as mid-point line connections, a deck gun and a front bumper hose connection.  It’s already had a workout, going on two calls in one day last week.  Warn said two lightning strikes, one, near the Cedars to the north and another to the south near County Road C and Highway 287 and the windfarm.  “That one took about six hours to bring under control.  We kept the new tanker on a maintained road.  It can travel over brush, but we don’t want to be moving at 20mph and hit some covered ruts in the road if we can help it,” he said.

Older Truck

The county has three holding tanks for water spread out on the plains for reserves. “We have three, 30,000 gallon tanks that are kept full when we need to refill in the middle of a fire.  It’s more sensible to have that reserve handy instead of having to drive to a pump away from the response area.”

The new tanker will eventually take over the prime spot, putting the older fire truck in the number two position. “We’ve had that one since 2001 and it usually went out first when a call came in, but once this new one is outfitted it will become the main engine we use.”  The county has retired an older model which has been in service for 27 years.  “That engine quit on us, it just locked up when we were responding to a call,” Warn said.  He said a grant, plus DoLA funding paid for that truck, so the county has gotten its use from it.

Hazmat Truck

The county fire department uses a third vehicle, a Rural Hazmat truck that can serve as a fire truck, but is also equipped for water rescue. It comes with standard first responder equipment as well as for containing a hazardous material spill.  “If a department requires mutual aid, they’ll have equipment on hand, but not enough bodies, so this can also be used to carry personnel with their tools and airpacks.  The previous owners also used this as an ambulance in case several people needed transport for medical aid,” Warn said.  It’s a find, as the county budgeted $55,000 for purchase, but it was on offer for $44,000.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: CountyFeaturedPublic SafetyTransportationUtilities


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