When you go to fight a fire in Surface Creek Valley, it's best to pack along some extra water.
Fire District No. 3 Fire Chief Kevin Walker says that the fire hydrants located in some parts of the valley can't always be relied on for adequate pressure and flow to fight fires.
So local firefighters take along their own extra water supply in the form of a tender that can carry 2,000 gallons, or more.
The District wants to station a 2,000-gallon tender at the Orchard City substation and has asked the Orchard City trustees to provide a building to house it in.
"Currently we rely on a tender from Cedaredge to back up the two trucks in Orchard City," Walker explained. The two trucks stationed at Orchard City are a brush truck "with a rescue body," and a pumper.
Firefighters say that by having an additional tanker stationed at Orchard City the time it takes to get additional water to a local fire can be cut by 10 minutes or more.
The availability of reliable water supply is becoming an ever bigger issue with insurance companies whose customers increasingly want to live in the urban/woodland interface zones. Walker said that he gets calls from insurers on a regular basis about the ability of District No. 3 to deliver water to a fire. Some people have gotten their fire insurance cancelled, he told the Orchard City trustees.
In a letter to the town, Walker states, "The Delta County Fire District No. 3 ten-year plan anticipates two additional trucks in the next three years. One of those trucks is contingent on having a place at Orchard City to house a 2,000-gallon tanker.
Walker added in his letter, "We understand planning is necessary for a station expansion with a potential cost of up to $40,000. This is why we are requesting your assistance early on this project. The time line for the project is for the 2014-15 calendar year. From the time we order the truck to delivery is 12 to 18 months.
"Delta County Fire District No. 3 will provide and purchase lights and heater, and plumbing," for the substation extension, Walker said. Cost of a new tanker is estimated at $230,000.
Adding a third bay to the Orchard City substation will require the town moving its road sanding equipment to another location.
Town board members will take up discussion of the estimated $40,000 expenditure as their 2014 budget process gets underway later this month with a budget retreat at Daveto's on Sept. 18.
"We have had an outstanding relationship with Orchard City," the letter states.blog comments powered by Disqus