By Alan M. Petrillo
The Monkey Island (OK) Fire Protection District had a problem it needed to solve. It had outgrown its small rescue truck, which was carrying too much equipment and not meeting the department’s rescue needs.
The fire district’s response area is small-6.5 square miles-but its population fluctuates wildly depending on the time of year, growing from 2,000 in the winter to around 30,000 during a typical July 4 weekend.
Chief Carl Tesreau says the response area is mostly a resort retirement community with citizens’ average age of 62 years old. “We have a wide variety of coverage, from household trailers to million-dollar homes,” he says. “Our district includes an 11-story high-rise building; a four-story, 120-room hotel; and a convention center being built that abuts a 36-hole Professional Golf Association (PGA) golf course. So we have a lot of tourist traffic during the season.”
|1 The Monkey Island (OK) Fire Protection District bought this 2008 KME custom rescue-pumper with a Hale 1,500-gallon-per-minute (gpm) pump, 750-gallon water tank, and Hale FoamLogix 5.0 foam system from Jon’s Mid America. (Photo courtesy of Monkey Island Fire Protection District.)|
Tesreau says the fire district was running a Ford F-550 rescue truck but had outgrown the rig because it had been loaded down with too much equipment. “We wanted a rescue-pumper in its place,” he observes. “We had bought a used truck from Jon’s Mid America in the past (a quint), so we knew them to be reliable and to have quality apparatus on hand.”
Jim Keltner, president of Jon’s Mid America, concurs that Monkey Island Fire Protection District was a prior customer, having purchased a 1990 LTI 75-foot aerial ladder quint six years earlier with a 1,750-gallons per minute (gpm) pump and a 400-gallon water tank.
|2 This 1990 LTI 75-foot aerial ladder quint with a 1,750-gpm pump and 400-gallon water tank was previously purchased by Monkey Island Fire Protection District from Jon’s Mid America. (Photo courtesy of Monkey Island Fire Protection District.)|
“They came to us because they wanted a used vehicle that had been gone through from head to toe,” Keltner says. “They wanted a vehicle that was finished and ready for them. The Monkey Island firefighters spent time with us, telling us what they wanted in the new pumper, and we found them a vehicle that fit their needs perfectly after we did some cosmetic and maintenance things to the rig.”
Keltner adds that Monkey Island Fire Protection District “had a pretty great need for additional compartmentation on a rescue-typevehicle, which led us to show them several rescue-pumpers.” The district representatives chose a 2008 KME custom rescue-pumper, he notes, based on its configuration and compartment space.
|3 The Monkey Island Fire Protection District covers a 6.5-square-mile peninsula from a single station. The resort area’s population fluctuates from 2,000 in winter to approximately 30,000 on July 4 weekend. (Photo courtesy of Monkey Island Fire Protection District.)|
Keltner notes that the Monkey Island District had considered buying two used fire apparatus instead of purchasing a new vehicle but ultimately realized it only had the budget for a single used truck. “Monkey Island wanted a warranty on their new truck, which we gave them, with a one-year warranty on the power train,” Keltner points out. “After we delivered the vehicle in early 2016, we went out to their location and gave their drivers and pump operators training on the KME rescue-pumper.”
Tesreau points out that the district also wanted to have a vehicle that was very maneuverable with foam capability; the 2008 KME qualifies on both counts. “We wanted foam on the new truck because we were going to be running it as a rescue-pumper, so we wanted it to be able to handle vehicle fires and fuel spills,” he says. “Also, having a foam capability on the new truck would stretch our water capabilities when we might run short on water.”
|4 Full-depth and full-height compartments and a 750-gallon water tank were important features of the rig. The vehicle is shown prior to the department’s lettering being applied. (Photo courtesy of Jon’s Mid America.)|
The KME rescue-pumper has been outfitted with hydraulic rescue tools. “We are moving from Genesis rescue tools to TNT Rescue tools with a spreader, cutter, and rams as well as Res-Q-Jacks, chain pulls, and ropes,” Tesreau points out. “We also run advanced protocols for emergency medical services out of the rescue-pumper because it is our paramedic engine. That vehicle does a whole lot of work for us.”
Tesreau says the custom cab has seating for five firefighters and “is large enough that all of our vital medical equipment is mounted inside.” The vehicle seats five firefighters, but the seats are not self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) seats. “There are no SCBA seats on this truck,” Tesreau says. “We have brackets holding SCBAs in the front compartments, left and right, on the pumper.”
|5 Water supply can be an issue in the district; firefighters sometimes have to go to draft to get a steady water supply. Here the district’s aerial ladder quint is drafting and supplying a remote monitor. Having enough water on hand was a major reason for the district’s purchase of the KME rescue-pumper with a 750-gallon water tank, something of a rarity in rescue-pumpers. (Photo courtesy of Monkey Island Fire Protection District.)|
He notes that any new truck the district purchases will not have SCBA seats in it. “They are very uncomfortable for the firefighters,” Tesreau says. “And if there’s an accident, there would be less flying debris. Plus, the extra space allows us more area for storage.”
Keltner points out that the rig “is a dual-purpose truck. With the limited personnel the district is running with in a small department, members wanted at least a 1,500-gpm pump and 750 gallons of water. We were able to satisfy their needs because often it is difficult to find 750 gallons of water on a used custom rescue-pumper.”
ALAN M. PETRILLO is a Tucson, Arizona-based journalist, the author of three novels and five nonfiction books, and a member of the Fire Apparatus & Emergency Equipment editorial advisory board. He served 22 years with the Verdoy (NY) Fire Department, including in the position of chief.
Jon’s Mid America KME Rescue-Pumper for Monkey Island (OK) Fire Protection District
- 2008 KME custom rescue-pumper
- Predator chassis with seating for five firefighters in cab
- Full-height rescue-style compartments on both sides
- Overall length: 29 feet 4 inches
- Overall height: 9 feet 4 inches
- CAT C-13 430-horsepower (hp) diesel engine
- Allison 3000 EVS automatic transmission
- Hale 1,500-gallon-per minute (gpm) pump
- 750-gallon polypropylene water tank
- Hale FoamLogix 5.0 foam system
- One six-inch and one 2.5-inch pump suction right side, one 2.5-inch left, and one four-inch rear
- Three 1.5-inch crosslay discharges, two 2.5-inch discharges (left and right), one four-inch large-diameter hose (LDH) discharge on right, 2.5-inch discharge rear, and deck gun discharge
- Akron Hi-Riser deck gun
- Federal Q siren
- Hydraulic ladder rack
- Two 12-volt scene lights at rear
- Two 12-volt high-intensity discharge (HID) telescoping scene lights
- Traffic advisor at rear
- Treadplate hosebed cover
Monkey Island (OK) Fire Protection District