The Aspen (CO) Fire Department is a predominantly volunteer fire agency that operates from four stations with seven paid firefighters and 40 volunteers serving the city of Aspen, Woody Creek, and a total of 87 square miles of coverage area. The addition of a satellite station drove the need for a Type 3 apparatus to be able to handle calls in the WUI terrain.
Ken Josselyn, Aspen’s battalion chief and fleet facilities manager, says the department formed a small committee of experienced firefighters and department leadership, which came up with the basic requirements of a WUI apparatus. “We sat with [several manufacturers] in a general meeting and asked them to give us ideas to build into our specs and at the same time fielded their questions as to our particular needs,” Josselyn says. “After we received all the bids, we reviewed them thoroughly and chose SVI Trucks to build the pumper.”
Josselyn notes that Aspen wanted to stay away from a custom chassis pumper because of its longer wheelbase. “We wanted to go with an International chassis with a small tire print to get us through ice and snow because we sit at about 10,000-foot elevation,” he points out. “We also wanted to modify the Type 3 so that we could hit the ISO 4 requirements.”
The resulting vehicle, says Jason Kline, Colorado and Wyoming sales manager for SVI Trucks, is on an International 7500 SFA 4×4 chassis and four door cab powered by a 380-hp Cummins L9 diesel engine and an Allison 3000 EVS automatic transmission. Wheelbase on the Type 3 is 190 inches, body length is 12 feet, overall height is 11 feet, and overall length is 28 feet 6 inches.
Josselyn says Aspen had SVI install a Hale single-stage 1,000-gpm PTO pump that has stationary pumping and pump-and-roll modes (instead of the usual 500-gpm pump on a Type 3), a 750-gallon polypropylene water tank (instead of the typical 500-gallon tank on a Type 3), a 20-gallon foam cell, and a FoamPro 2001 electronic foam system. “We also added H.O. Bostrom air suspension seating for four firefighters,” he notes, “and SCBA in a compartment on the curb side. In addition, SVI built an electrically actuated aluminum hosebed cover that splits in the center, and we have a curbside Zico electric-over-hydraulic ladder rack holding a 24-foot extension ladder, 14- and 10-foot roof ladders, two pike poles, and one 10-foot section of 5-inch hard suction.”
Kline says the Type 3 pumper has two 1¾-inch hose crosslays and one 2½-inch crosslay above the pump panel and one 1¾-inch hoseline in the front bumper. The rig has two 5-inch intakes (one each side), plus a 5-inch intake toward the curb side at the rear of the truck. The Type 3 has an Akron Brass Apollo 1,250-gpm deck gun, an Elkhart Brass Sidewinder remote control monitor on the front bumper, all Akron Brass electronic valves, and electronic flow meters on the crosslays.
Lighting on the Type 3 includes OnScene Solutions LED compartment lights, Whelen LED warning lights, four Whelen Pioneer LED scene lights (two on each side), a Whelen LED light bar, and a 30 inch Rigid Industry LED brow light.
Aspen Fire Department’s other apparatus includes four structural pumpers, two wildland engines, two rescue trucks, one water tender (tanker), and a 104 foot aerial ladder.
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.