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Carstairs, county purchasing new rescue unit

In the early 2000s, the Carstairs department had a dedicated rescue unit but was forced to sell it as the former fire hall did not have enough space

CARSTAIRS – The Town of Carstairs and Mountain View County have agreed to split the cost of a second-hand dedicated rescue truck for the Carstairs Fire Department, at a cost of $332,875 each.

The approval of the purchase came during recent Carstairs and county council meetings. 

The Carstairs intermunicipal collaboration committee recently reviewed the proposed purchase and recommended it proceed.

“The purchase of a dedicated rescue unit for the department will bring the department in alignment with the other county fire departments that already have this apparatus and allow for the department to appropriately respond to motor vehicle collision and other rescue related responses,” said Chris Atchison, the county's director of legislative services. 

“The used truck is currently in service in Nova Scotia and has 5,100 kilometres on it and is no longer required due to the size and response volumes of that department.”

The cost of a new similar truck has been estimated at $1.2 million, he said.

In a joint release from MVC, the Town of Carstairs, and the Carstairs Fire Department, officials said the unit will be a valuable addition to current equipment.

“We are currently using Unit 130, a Rosenbauer Engine as a rescue unit,” officials said. “This truck does not have the space to carry all the equipment needed for extrications, so we are forced to carry some of it on our back up Unit 120, a 2027 Fort Gary Engine, as we do not have a dedicated rescue (unit), which is limiting our operations slightly.”

In the early 2000s the Carstairs department did have a dedicated rescue unit but was forced to sell it as the former fire hall did not have space for the vehicle.

The fire department does not see a large increase in the fleet maintenance costs or fuel budget as “rescue units usually don’t take a lot of maintenance but there obviously will be some occurrences. We would need to budget approximately a 10 per cent increase in fuel and maintenance,” officials said.

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