SPRINGFIELD — The “wash-down” is a tradition when bringing in a new fire truck.
The Springfield Fire Department will introduce its new ladder truck to the community with a ceremonial “wash-down” at 10 a.m. Friday, Oct. 19 at Fire Station 2, 608 W. Commercial Street.
Assistant Fire Chief Olan Morelan explained the meaning behind the time-honored tradition of washing down new fire apparatus.
“’Wash-downs’ and ‘push-ins’ have been a tradition in the fire service for many years. In the days of horse-drawn apparatus, when a crew would return from a fire, the apparatus would be washed and cleaned by community members, and then pushed back into the station to await the next emergency,” Morelan said.
The 100-foot aerial ladder truck, built by Rosenbauer America at a cost of $1.2 million, replaces a truck that had been in use for 20 years. The older truck will be placed in reserve status.
The purchase of the new truck was provided through a combination of one-time carryover funds and monies provided through the Level Property Tax.
The ladder truck has the ability to deliver 2,000 gallons of water per minute, carries an assortment of rescue and firefighting tools and allows firefighters to reach nearly every roof in the city with elevated water streams.