New truck allows Gantt department to go off road

Published 1:39 am Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Gantt Fire and Rescue received a military surplus truck to use as its new tanker Tuesday.

Fire Chief Scott Fight said that the department received it from the Alabama Forestry Commission.

“It only had 933 miles on it when we picked it up,” he said. “It’s basically a new truck.”

Fight said as part of the agreement, they have to maintain it, paint it and put their signage on the truck.

It’s currently military desert tan, but they will paint it red, and put on a 550-gallon tank and hoses.

“It’s four-wheel drive, which will allow us to take it places we can’t go in our other trucks,” he said. “It’s hard to get it stuck.”

Fight said he got the fire department put on a list 18-20 months ago.

“It’s a cycle,” he said. “When they get equipment, they see if there is a department that can use it. If we maintain it for the two years, we get to keep it.”

Fight said with the ability to put a 550-gallon tank on it, and the four-wheel drive and it being shorter in length than a fire truck, it will make their ability to shuttle water easier.

“We will be able to get in fields,” he said. “Though, we don’t want to do this, we could go through fences if we need to in order to get to a fire.”

Fight said this is just another way they are working to better serve the residents in the Gantt fire district.

Last year, the department opened its second station on Pier 7 Road and improved its ISO rating to 5.

“This is something that our community can be proud of,” he said. “We want our community to know putting the equipment on this truck is some of what the donations go to. We have a lot of people who make donations and we really do appreciate it.”

Brandon Holland, vice president of the county volunteer fire association, said that this truck saves the department a lot of money.

“This allows them to use their money for other means in the community,” he said.