Fire Destroys Chesterfield Firetruck

A Chesterfield firetruck, a pumper/tanker valued at $300,000 and acquired in 2007, burst into flames on I-91 last week while being driven down to North Haven (CT), for a repair to a “primer” for drawing water into the truck.

There were no injuries but the truck was badly damaged. It’s not clear yet if the vehicle can be repaired, Town Administrator Susan Labrie said, or when it might be usable again, and town officials are waiting to get an appraisal from their insurer before they decide what steps to take next.

A licensed truck driver and member of the Chesterfield Fire Department was driving the truck to North Haven to have its primer looked at. The primer expels air from the truck’s water tank and also takes water into the tank. It’s a vital device on any rural fire truck, because many towns such as Chesterfield do not have fire hydrants.

The town has a smaller pumper truck used as reserve and also has an older, larger pumper that was replaced by the 2007 truck. Based on the kind of damage to the main pumper, the town could look into renting a fire truck, but insurance money would only cover that for a few months.

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