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Chesapeake Fire Department purchases 11 Pierce Ultimate Configuration (PUC) Pumpers

Published on 26 February 2009

One of the Pierce Ultimate Configuration (PUC) pumpers delivered to Chesapeake Fire Department
One of the Chesapeake Fire Department's new PUC pumpers from Pierce Manufacturing
Pierce Manufacturing, an Oshkosh Corporation company, today announced an order from the Chesapeake Fire Department in Chesapeake, Va. for 11 Pierce® Ultimate Configuration (PUC) pumpers.

In addition, the department ordered a firefighter rehabilitation vehicle with a 24-foot walk-in body. The first Pierce PUC pumper was delivered in late January 2009 and all remaining vehicles will be placed into service by October 2009. The total apparatus order is valued at $6.75 million.

"The Pierce PUCs will be a tremendous asset to our department and our community. We were extremely impressed by the PUC engineering, especially its effective use of space and how it permits firefighters to access equipment more quickly and easily," said Stephen Best, fire chief of the Chesapeake Fire Department.

"Firefighter safety is our department's top priority, and the advanced safety technologies found on the Pierce Quantum® chassis, including side-roll protection, frontal airbags, electronic stability control, and a tire pressure management system will provide an envelope of protection around our firefighters."

The Chesapeake Fire Department was first introduced to the PUC body configuration at an industry trade show in 2007. The PUC dramatically alters the way the fire service configures apparatus by removing the bulky pumphouse without compromising firefighting capabilities. This industry-changing, multi-purpose vehicle has been engineered to be easier to use, service, maneuver and operate safely.

"Our department's fleet replacement program was becoming a concern, and our fire trucks were lacking important safety features and performance technologies. Moreover, vehicle downtime, repairs and out-of-service time were driving up the costs of operating an older fleet. Thankfully, a creative lease-to-purchase program, along with an extremely supportive administration and city council, allowed us to obtain a new fleet of front line pumpers," added Best.

Built on Pierce Quantum chassis, the pumpers are identically configured, with the exception that five have flat cab roofs to accommodate lower-height station doors. Important features include TAK-4® independent front suspension, a 435 hp engine, 6-speed automatic transmission, 400 amp alternator, 27-inch front bumper extension, wireless headset radio system for the driver and officer, hands-free SCBA brackets, keyless entry and a Whelen LED lighting package. Firefighting features include a 1500 gpm single-stage pump, 750-gallon poly water tank, Husky® 12 dual agent foam system and a radio remote control deck gun.

"The PUC configuration has taken its rightful position as one of the most successful innovations in our company's history," said Wilson Jones, Oshkosh Corporation executive vice president and president, Fire & Emergency. "The feedback we're receiving from fire departments is beyond expectations, and demonstrates the PUC's acceptance by the fire industry."

The Chesapeake Fire Department covers the city with 15 stations and a total of 17 engines, three ladder trucks and nine medic units. The department averages 24,000 calls a year. Singer and Associates, the Pierce dealer serving Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, portions of West Virginia and the District of Columbia, supplies service and support.

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