THOMASTOWN FIRE service is to receive a new fire tender to replace its existing fire engine, which is nearly 20 years old. The new engine will be delivered on September 27.
The new tender will be a Volvo Class B Traditional tender and ladder appliance. The fire engine will have an internal tank holding 1,800 litres of water as well as four ladders ranging in height from 2.4 metres to 13.5 metres. The specialised vehicle cost E320,000 and has been fitted with a bronze gun metal pump in order to deal with salt water that it will encounter during its fire-fighting role. A senior officer with Kilkenny Fire Service explained that the fire engine will be operating in the south of the county where the rivers are tidal. The salt water in the river would destroy a normal pump so the fire service has opted for a more expensive bronze pump.
In line with a decision taken by the Chief Fire Office in Kilkenny a number of years ago the new fire tender will be equipped with a compressed air foam system. The CAFS system allows firefighters to extinguish fires with up to 90% less water than a traditional fire hose.
A senior officer with Kilkenny Water Services said that water damage with the use of traditional hoses can be worse than the fire damage.
The new CAFS system will allow the fire service to put out small fires with 60 litres of water instead of 200 litres. “The less water the fire services uses the better,” he said.
CAFS-equipped fire engines have already been delivered to Graignamanagh and Castlecomer. Kilkenny Fire Services are in line to receive one in the near future.