By Chris Mc Loone
It isn’t often one finds one’s self in the home of the president of a fire apparatus manufacturing company for dinner, but that is exactly where I and several other media representatives found ourselves on March 24. The occasion? It was the night before E-ONE’s Media Day, and Dan Peters, president of E-ONE, invited us into his home for dinner. And, we arrived in style in a custom E-ONE pumper fire apparatus.
The reason for the media event was to introduce new products the folks at E-ONE are very excited about.
The Media Day began with a tour of both campuses of the E-ONE facility. Media members walked through the entire production process for E-ONE’s product line—from assembling its Quest, Cyclone II, and Typhoon cabs and chassis to body construction, and finally to the company’s aerial apparatus plant. Once the tour was complete, E-ONE representatives Joe Hedges, Raff McDougall, Chip Goodson, and Jim Salmi gave presentations on the company’s newest products.
Of particular interest is that E-ONE has now entered the steel aerial arena, and we got a close-up view of the new rig. Jim Salmi, director, aerial product development, led the discussion on the new aerials the company is building. His challenge? To maintain the E-ONE DNA, according to Salmi, while incorporating a steel aerial. Salmi and his team accomplished the objective.
From the pivot point of the ladder on down, everything about the aerial apparatus is exactly the same as E-ONE’s aluminum aerial devices. There are, of course, some innovations that Salmi shared.
The aerial, designated HPS 105, offers a 2.5:1 safety factor and an integral torque box chassis, criss-cross underslung jacks with no pins, and compartments over the jacks. The ladder is 105 feet and features a 500-pound tip load dry or wet for up to 1,000-gpm flow. A roller system allows the aerial, constructed of 100 KSI Domex, to operate without needing to be greased.
The rig we saw features E-ONE’s new advanced aerial control systems, which features a 3½-inch backlit color display that comes through the console with essential information needs for the operator. At one point, I took the controls of the new aerial and was impressed with the new control system’s features. Ramp control was particularly useful for me. E-ONE’s ramp control features three predefined settings that can change how firm or soft the ladder starts and stops—useful for me because this was only the second time I’ve operated an aerial device, having come from a rescue company. I’m sure the E-ONE folks were pretty glad that feature exists as well.
E-ONE has more to talk about, so stay tuned. Tomorrow we’ll post more pictures from the tour and more information regarding E-ONE’s new steel aerials.