SMITH COUNTY, Texas (KLTV) - The Smith County Emergency Services District No. 2 has taken delivery of three new fire engines.
The engines will be placed in service at the Arp, Jackson Heights and Troup volunteer fire departments. The purchase of the engines was made as part of the capital improvement plan in place for the district, according to a press release.
This plan addresses the need to replace aging apparatus throughout the district. The Jackson Heights truck was further made possible with a grant from the Texas Forest Service.
The cost of the three engines was about $1.1 million. A grant from the Texas Forest Service was applied to the Jackson Heights engine which reduced that price tag by about $218,000, according to Smith County ESD No. 2 Chief Terry Rozell.
The new trucks replace engines that are over 20 years old, but those old engines won’t be completely taken out of commission.
“They won’t be taken out of commission. They”ll be taken out of front-line service. We’ll actually go through, check them out, make sure everything’s good on them and they’ll actually go to reserve status," said Smith County ESD No. 2 Capt. Kelcey Trotty.
The new engines are equipped with modern firefighting technology, and up-to-date equipment. The Smith County EDS No. 2 has been working to get the engines service ready for about a month.
Firefighters will be completing training on the operation of the new engines on Saturday, August 10th. The engines are expected to go into service after that training is complete.
“It’s a big upgrade. We’re fortunate around here in that our volunteer departments have an ESD board that really cares about the departments and really tries to make sure we have everything that we need to protect the citizens in the ESD. So being able to have a board that’s willing to purchase stuff like this for us you know it’s a blessing. It really is,” Trotty said.
Smith County ESD 2 was formed in 2007 by a public referendum. It is the primary funding source for eleven volunteer fire departments in Smith County. Those departments are Arp, Bullard, Chapel Hill, Dixie, Flint Gresham, Jackson Heights, Noonday, Red Springs, Troup, Winona and Whitehouse volunteer fire departments.
Click here for more information.