Cranberry Township’s Volunteer Fire Company will take delivery of a brand new, custom-built rescue vehicle in a ceremony at the Haine School Road fire station on Tuesday, September 9, at 6:00 PM. The new $600,000 truck, financed by a long-established one mil fire tax on local real estate and built by KME Fire Apparatus to specifications set by a seven-member committee of the Fire Company, will replace one that went into service 17 years ago.
Tuesday’s arrival of the new rescue truck will be open to the public. Visitors will be able to witness several fire service traditions similar to the christening of a newly commissioned ship, which are believed to bring good luck and safety to the fire company and its new truck. First is a ceremonial passing of the vehicle’s title along with presentation of final payment to its dealer. Next, one of the members of the fire company takes a tool from the old truck and places it on the new truck. Finally, there is a tradition of fire company members pushing the truck into its station bay by hand.
As the first, and frequently the only fire company vehicle dispatched to highway crashes and building fires, a rescue truck can deliver as many as ten firefighters to the scene along with an extensive assortment of equipment including tools to cut apart wrecked cars and extract their injured passengers. The workhorse rescue apparatus also includes a generator to produce electricity, a compressor to run hydraulic tools, and a system used to refill the air cylinders firefighters carry when fighting interior blazes.