Morton Grove Likes The Versatility Of Smeal Quint

Morton Grove's 75-foot Smeal Fire Apparatus quint was selected for providing versatility on the fire scene.
Morton Grove Fire Department’s 75-foot Smeal Fire Apparatus quint, equipped with a 1,500 gpm pump, was selected for providing versatility on the fire scene. (Fire Apparatus Photo by Ron Heal)

Morton Grove Fire Chief Tom Friel and his department’s apparatus committee needed a new pumper and since the community didn’t run an aerial, relying instead on mutual aid for a ladder, they seized the opportunity to address both  at the same time.

Department members in this residential city of 23,000, in Chicago’s north suburbs visited St. Louis, Mo.,  which runs all Quints as well as other communities operating similar units.

They liked what they saw.

They ordered a Smeal 75-foot heavy-duty steel, rear-mount aerial ladder aerial with a 1,500 gpm pump and a 400 gallon UPF PolyTank.

Morton Grove worked with Kevin Lueder, Chicago Heights (Ill.) sales representative for A.E.C. Fire & Safety, dealer for Smeal Fire Apparatus, of Snyder, Neb. 

Chuck Glagola, Smeal aerial specialist, and by Bryan Smeal, the company’s regional sales manager helped Morton Grove design the rig built a Smeal Sirius MFD chassis.

Powered by a Detroit Diesel Series 60 515 hp engine driving an Allison 4000EVS transmission the new

Quint carries a Waterous CSU 1,500 gpm pump.

The new Quint also has blue LED ladder rung lights and a powered monitor nozzle as well as a Harrison 6,000-watt hydraulic generator, Robinson ROM roll-up doors, and a Whelen lighting package.

The selling price was $525,000, and a Federal Fire Act Grant helped the community pay for the apparatus.

Chief Friel is enthusiastic about the hose bed’s ergonomic design which facilitates hose loading and reduces firefighter back injury risk.

The rig carries 750 feet of 4-inch supply hose, 350 feet of 3-inch finished off with 100 feet of 2.5-inch attack line.

In addition, there are two 200 ft. preconnected crosslays of 2-inch attack hose and  a 100 ft. 1.5-inch preconnected trash line.

Now in service for several months, Morton Grove Fire Department is very pleased with their new apparatus’ performance. All the needs of the truck committee have been met or exceeded.

Morton Grove is running the unit as a fully-manned Quint on structure fire responses, augmenting the standard three person crew with a firefighters from the companion rescue squad.

Friel stressed the key benefit of the new apparatus for Morton Grove and the mutual aid communities is that “Aerial capability is readily available when we need it,” he said.

Morton Grove Fire Department provides emergency fire and first responder services to a 5.2 square mile area from two fire stations. The current ratio of medical calls to fire calls is approximately four to one.

Ongoing new home construction of large, single-family homes made an aerial device a desirable piece of firefighting equipment.

A.E.C. Fire & Safety and Smeal Fire Apparatus said they are proud to have been chosen by the Morton Grove Fire Department’s apparatus committee to form a partnership throughout the apparatus service life.

Smeal Fire Apparatus, a family-owned business since 1955, puts pride into the quality and workmanship of every apparatus that is expected to perform under extreme conditions on a moment’s notice. They work closely with their dealers to make certain any service and/or warranty issues are handled promptly.

A.E.C. Fire & Safety is also a family-owned business in Springfield, Ill., doing business since 1941. It is the authorized Smeal dealer in Illinois.

For information call 402-568-2224 or go to

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