Friday, March 23, 2012

Reader's Rigs - Onesquethaw Vol. Fire Co.

Jim, a reader and member of the Onesquethaw Vol. Fire Co.  noted my affinity for white fire apparatus  (the color not the manufacturer) and sent me a picture of Engine 25-30, a 2002 HME/Marion pumper-tanker from his department.

I like the way that this unit looks and there are several features on it that I like even more. First of all it's white, with subtle blue and gold accent lines on the cab, with the blue line continuing down the hose body.  I also like the way the cab's roof-line  is raised at the back, easing the transition to the large hose body. I find the name "Rolling White Thunder" to be appropriate and like that it's painted above the grill.

That large hose body covers a 2000 gallon water tank and a 1500 gpm pump. There is nothing that states "I have lots of water on board"  like two rear axles and a plus sized hose body.  As hydrants are few and far between in their part of Albany County, all of Onesquethaw's engines have at least 1000 gallon tanks. If there isn't water where you're going, you had better bring it with you.

The roll-up compartment doors are handy, it's pretty hard to rip them off if you try to leave the station with them open. Ask me how I know..

The swiveling front suction, mounted on the the front bumper is also a handy feature. It's pretty hard to miss a hydrant spot with one of these, they allow for a wide range of correction without moving the rig. If the pump and plumbing is tight enough, you can also draft with it.

How handy would it be it to just pull straight in to your water source, hook the hard suction to the swivel, then nose the bumper right up to or even slightly over the edge of the water source? I can tell you it's nice. We used to order them on our rigs, but have discontinued the practice. I missed them.

I thought this a nice rig and thought that I'd share it with you. Thanks to Jim for allowing me to post the picture and thanks to you for reading. Have a great weekend.



  1. That is a sharp looking rig.
    I still need to get down to my old home town and get you pics of their white E-One Bronto and engine with the blue striping.


  2. "If the pump and plumbing is tight enough, you can also draft with it."

    Hi, Captain Schmoe. What's "draft," it's not tailgating a race car or having a beer on tap?

  3. MGM - Indeed you do!

    Wayne Conrad - As much as enjoy both of the items that you mentioned, drafting as applied to firefighting is the practice of drawing water up from a static source, through the pump and hoses and onto the fire.

    This is opposed to obtaining water from a hydrant, where the pressure of the source forces water into the pump where the pressure is then increased.

    Drafting can be done from lakes, rivers, swimming pools, canals portable tanks etc. The key is to lower the pressure inside the pump and suction hose to below atmospheric pressure, allowing the atmospheric pressure to push the water up into the pump. Think sucking water up a straw.

    There are a series of formulas used to calculate maximum lift (in feet) but the condition of the pump and the suction side of the plumbing system are the big variables in determining the amount one can lift.

    Hope this helps.

  4. Captain Schmoe, Very helpful. Thanks!