Brunswick Fire Co. No. 1 Has Unique Pumper

TROY, N.Y. – The Brunswick Fire Co. No. 1 has a very unique Sutphen custom pumper in service helping to protect the people in and around Troy, a busy commercial corridor around Albany,  New York’s capitol.

It’s not the Hale CAFS Pro system that makes it unique, although Assistant Chief Gus Scifo Jr. says it is one of the nicest features on the apparatus.

It’s not the Will-Burt light tower that makes it different, but Scifo says he doesn’t know how his department did without one before getting the 2005 Sutphen Monarch pumper.

“We want to put one on all our rigs now,” he says.

What makes the apparatus unique is the top-mount, side-mount pump control panel. To keep the wheelbase and overall length of the vehicle down, Brunswick firefighters specified a hybrid pump panel.

Top-Mount Side-Mount

Scifo explains that the pump operator is elevated above the side running board and the control panel is orientated to the driver’s side of the apparatus, thus the top-mount, side-mount configuration. Scifo says is the second one Sutphen has made. Very few manufacturers were willing to build a pumper with this configuration, but he says he’s pleased that Sutphen is one of the few that would.

Inspiring Idea

“We got the idea from Windsor Locks, Conn.,” Scifo says, noting that department got Sutphen’s first top-mount, side-mount apparatus. “We looked at their truck and really liked the idea. It gives the pump operator a 360 degree view of the fire scene. It makes it possible for the guy operating the pump to be the guy in command.”

And, more importantly, it keeps firefighters operating the pump safe, up out of the tangle of hoses, away from the intakes and discharges as well as approaching traffic. On a traditional side-mount pump panel the operator stands on the ground,  sometimes on the pavement in the roadway, and often exposed to the hazards of passing traffic.

The new Sutphen, which is now the department’s first out apparatus, replaces a “monster” of a pumper that had a 10-occupant cab and chassis, a top-mount pump and an overall length of 35 feet. That apparatus was sold to a department in Utah that was thrilled to have it. The Brunswick firefighters appreciate the new Sutphen’s shorter overall length, coming it at just about 31 feet.

The all-volunteer department, comprised of 60 members, with 25 to 30 active, protects 4 square miles and a population of about 7,500 people answering 420 calls annually, including emergency medical calls.

Like many volunteer departments, the Brunswick company often experiences staffing shortages in the daytime hours which is one of the reasons why the members choose to equip the new pumper with a compressed air foam system.

“We feel that CAFS is the future of fire fighting,” Scifo says. “There’s more knock down power with CAFS and less damage than straight water.”

The price for the Hale CAFS Pro was well worth it consider the staffing shortage during daytime runs, says the assistant chief who was also part of the committee that wrote the specifications for the apparatus.

Custom Cab And Chassis

The rescue engine the department received is built on a custom cab and chassis by Sutphen with a 10-inch raised roof. It’s powered by a Detroit Diesel Series 60 455 hp engine and Allison 4000EVS transmission.

In addition to the Hale CAFS, the pumper has a Hale Qmax 1,500 gpm pump and a 500-gallon UPF tank with an integrated 30-gallon Class A foam cell. It also has an Elkhart Vulcan deck gun.

Other features include an Onan 6,000-watt hydraulic generator, Code 3 LED warning lights, a Federal Signal Q2B siren, painted Robinson roll- up doors, and a Zico hydraulic ladder rack.

Scifo says he and his members are pleased with the workmanship of the Sutphen pumper and are headed to becoming an all Sutphen department with another Sutphen mini-pumper already in service and a twin to the CAFS pumper recently delivered on order. The second pumper will have a 1,000-gallon tank and no CAFS, but identical in all other respects.

A $1.3 Million Order

The second Class A pumper from Sutphen is part of a $1.3 million order that includes a new aerial for the growing community.

The CAFS pumper was purchased from Mike Myers, the Sutphen factory representative for New York, for $441,000.

“Sutphen has outstanding service and quality craftsmanship,” Scifo says. “They have an outstanding territory representative too.”

Assistant Chief Scifo says his department is the third busiest of the 43 volunteer departments in the county and they need something to stand up to everyday use.

“We’re very pleased with our new Sutphen,” he says. “We’re looking forward to taking deliver of the others on order.”

For information call 800-848-5860 or go to

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