New Mexico County Commissioners Approve Funds to Replace Volunteers’ Aging Tanker

Queen Volunteer Fire Department is given funds to replace a 15-year-old converted rig.

Funding given to replace a 15-year-old
converted water hauler

Mike Smith, Carlsbad Current-Argus, N.M.

(MCT)

An aging tanker truck for the Queen Volunteer Fire Department is in the process of being replaced, said Josh Mack, director of the Eddy County Fire Service.

The Eddy County Board of County Commissioners approved a budget transfer of $465,000 from the Queen Fire excise budget to the Queen Fire heavy truck fund on Jan. 19.

Eddy County records noted the Queen Fire Department had an excise cash balance of $808,000 as of Jan. 12.

More: Eddy County fire departments get money to purchase needed safety equipment

Mack said the current tanker was purchased used and there’s multiple safety concerns.

“Queen has a 15-year-old tanker converted from a water hauler,” he said.

Mack said the current unit has engine issues and its hard finding replacement parts for it.

“The current truck has a severe oil leak. With oil puddles under it,” he said.

Besides the tanker, Mack said Queen’s department has a fire engine and three brush trucks. He said the new truck would be nice for the remote mountain community located southwest of Carlsbad.

“Queen is very remote from other (county) stations. It takes 45 minutes to get up there,” Mack said.

More: County fire personnel worry about warm fall and winter seasons

He said the new unit will be made by Pierce Manufacturing. The company is based in Wisconsin, per their website.

Mack said the county is using Siddons Martin Emergency Group as the purchasing agent.

Eddy County Manager Allen Davis said the county studied multiple options when purchasing the new unit.

“Even though it’s 15-years old, but how many hours are on the motor and how many hours are on the pump and if they’re spending more to maintain it. There’s that trade off there,” Davis said.

Mack said it will take some time before the new unit is sent to Queen.

More: Cleanup day coming to the Queen area of Eddy County

“The standard built time is 12 to 14 months. Due to COVID (19) and being backed up (with other orders),” he said.

Mack added there is a fire truck parked at the Fire Service office in Carlsbad and it could be mobilized during fire season in the Queen area.

“The old truck will more than likely go to auction,” Mack said of the possible impending fate of the current unit.

More: COVID-19 doesn’t stop former shuttered Queen Cafe from reopening

The new truck meets current standards set forth by the National Fire Protection Association.

Mike Smith can be reached at 575-628-5546 or by email at MSmith@currentargus.com or @ArgusMichae on Twitter.

This article originally appeared on Carlsbad Current-Argus: Queen VFD gets new $465K tanker

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