New vehicles at the Honolulu Fire Department are designed to help keep firefighters and the community safe.
A blessing was held Tuesday for 10 Kovatch Mobile Equipment Predator Severe Service pumper apparatuses, or engines. They’re equipped with a variety of features, including front and side air bags, rear-view cameras, air-compressed foam, an additional hose reel, and a lower body design for easier access to cabinets and equipment.
They will be assigned to the Kaaawa, Kahuku, Kaimuki, Kalihi Kai, Kalihi Uka, Manoa, Mililani, Palolo, Waikiki, and Waipahu fire stations.
“These trucks represent the highest technology in the industry. We have specified the best equipment to service our community,” said Fire Chief Manuel Neves. “A lot of these trucks will be replacing trucks that are up to 20 years old.”
Two 2018 KME Predator Severe Service Tractor-draw aerial ladders will also be put into service soon. They come with ladders that can reach up to 101 feet versus some of their previous ladders, which could only reach 80 to 85 feet.
Officials say the added height will be particularly helpful in case there is ever an emergency along the rail line.
Altogether, the vehicles cost approximately $10 million and were paid for with city and federal funds.
“This is one of the biggest purchases that we’ve ever had at one time, but we’ve been on a mission to replace our aging fleet for the last six years, so we’ve been very successful with the help of the city council, the mayor’s administration, and also all of vendors to come in with a really good price and good value for our department,” Neves said.
Neves says the department’s older trucks will be used for training, or placed in the reserve fleet.