One local fire department recently used grant money to purchase a new brush truck in order to cut down on fuel costs and prevent additional wear and tear on the agency’s larger trucks.
Howards Creek Volunteer Fire Department, located at 3117 W. Highway 27 in Lincolnton, currently has one brush truck, according to Fire Chief Dusty Rudisill.
The North Carolina Department of Insurance and Office of the State Fire Marshal awarded the department a $30,000 matching funds grant this summer to purchase a second brush truck, worth well over the grant amount.
The truck will replace a brush truck the agency originally purchased in 1984, Rudisill said.
The department applies annually for the grant in order to purchase additional operating equipment.
“This is typically the only time that equipment such as turnout gear, rescue tools, even down to the fire hose, is purchased,” Rudisill said.
While fire officials plan to primarily utilize the fresh piece of transportation for quick responses to brush, grass and wood fires, it will also be used for medical emergencies within the district and for a variety of other purposes, unlike the previous truck, Rudisill said.
The agency is also in the process of building a new fire station on the county’s western end, a nearly 15,000 square-foot facility that will also house Emergency Medical Services and the Sheriff’s Office.
The fire department will lease roughly 2,200 square-feet of the new space to the additional two county agencies.
Fire officials expect the new station to be completed by December.
Howards Creek Volunteer Fire Department currently boasts a team of 35 firefighters who responded to more than 300 calls last year and 168 service calls since the start of 2012, Rudisill said.