Cleveland (OH) Firefighters Speak Out on Damaged Ladder Truck, Aging Fleet

Ladder 30 was heavily damaged in a crash while parked at a traffic accident last week.

According to a report from 19News, the Cleveland (OH) Fire Department’s (CFD’s) apparatus fleet is causing concern among department members, jeopardizing the first responders’ ability to help in an emergency.

At Station 30 on Cleveland’s east side, CFD firefighters were forced to use a damaged apparatus because the city didn’t have any reserves available. Firefighters were working a car accident on I-90 early last week when a driver crashed into Ladder 30, heavily damaging a utility ladder on its side, breaking a tail light, and smashing in a few compartments. Cleveland Firefighters Union Francis Lally said that no member was injured in the crash, but the accident did shake their confidence in using Ladder 30 on future responses.

Regardless, Ladder 30 is back in position at Station 30, and there is no timeline as to when it will be fully repaired.

Lally says the CFD can’t take it out of service because there are no spares available to replace it, drawing attention to the long-time problem his crews have been mentioning for years. He also said that city leaders had listened at one point, purchasing a few new trucks in 2020. However, those vehicles are sitting around waiting for radio equipment to be installed.

It’s frustrating, because he says if the trucks were in operation his crews wouldn’t just have to make due in Ladder 30.

The CFD did not reply to a request for comment.

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