Five Questions for Steve Toren, Waterous Director of Sales & Marketing

Chris Mc Loone

CM: How has the ACCESS pump module been received thus far?

ST: The ACCES module has been very well received. At FDIC we had very good reviews of that product and we’ve continued to send out specifications to fire departments that want to write this product into their specs. The biggest thing that intrigued the folks in the fire service was the access-the ability to lift it up and get inside and do repairs without a whole lot of “turning yourself into a pretzel” and for not that much additional money. Some actuators, a hinge, and some adjustments-you have to split the module at the point just below the hose trays. Based on that, the interest has been tremendous.

CM: What do you see as the biggest issue in the fire service right now, and how does Waterous work to address it?

ST: I think the biggest issue in the fire service right now continues to be lack of revenues in fire departments in North America. I think Canada is doing better than the United States as far as that goes. How are we helping with that? We continue to work hard at Waterous to keep the cost down in our product and come up with innovations that provide the fire suppression capability in the pumping part of the apparatus but keep the cost down.

CM: What do you think is the most important Waterous innovation for the fire service during recent years?

ST: I really believe that, and it’s not an innovation in the truest sense, but from a pumping standpoint, from the fire suppression standpoint, it is compressed air foam and the improvements in that part of fire suppression or the pumping part of the apparatus. In particular, our new ONE STEP, and that’s a Waterous innovation. Overall, CAFS has really taken more center stage. I think from the standpoint of innovation, what has been done with compressed air foam from the actual foams-they are vastly improved-proportioning, again vastly improved, and ONE STEP and its ability to mix the three components in CAFS-water, foam, and air-most efficiently and come out with a product that is far superior to straight water.

CM: What’s next for Waterous?

ST: Waterous is going to continue to make improvements to our products. We continue to improve where we are headed with our ONE STEP product in compressed air foam, and then electronic pump controls.

CM: What keeps you up at night?

ST: Being director of sales and marketing here at Waterous, what keeps me up at night is really keeping business coming in the door here at Waterous. Over the past four or five years, the economy has really been a problem. It’s been coming up, so we’ve seen improvement there. And, I’m very excited about what’s coming up for the future and so business is coming in the door, but the main thing that keeps me up at night is keeping the shops busy for our employees.

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