New fire engine arrives at Ardmore Fire Department, replacing 20-year-old truck

Sierra Rains
The Ardmore Fire Department received a new fire engine on Wednesday of last week. The truck is expected to be in service by Friday, June 12 and will replace a nearly 20-year-old fire truck.

The Ardmore Fire Department received a shiny new addition to its fleet of fire engines last week.

Engine two will replace a nearly 20-year-old fire truck and is expected to be in service by Friday, June 12. AFD Training Officer Jason Woydziak said the fire department got approval from the Carter County Chief’s Association for the new 1,000 gallon tank fire engine in February of 2019.

“Usually we try to get about 15 years out of them,” Woydziak said. “The reliability, just like with cars as they get older, they break down more and more. We’ve got an aging fleet and this is definitely going to help get us back on a more reliable track.”

Two other fire engines at the department are now around 18 to 20 years old, with the newest truck before engine two arrived being three years old. The frequency of when the department receives new engines depends on budgetary issues.

“Really, when a truck gets to the point where we’re spending more to keep it running than it would cost to buy a new one is usually when they start weighing that out,” Woydziak said.

Funds from the county fire sales tax are used to purchase new engines and other equipment for the Ardmore Fire Department and other departments throughout Carter County. A 2018 proposition updated the tax to one-eighth of one percent, which went into effect Jan. 1, 2019 and will expire Dec. 31, 2024.

“This current truck that we’re receiving now was actually paid for with money from the previous tax so we renewed the tax a year ago,” Woydziak said, adding that the previous sales tax was a quarter of a cent. “When we renewed this one they saw how long that money lasted and so they opted to just go with an eighth of a cent this time.”

The new engine is currently being equipped with department-specific radios and loaded with equipment like hoses in order to be ready to respond to emergencies. Woydziak said engine two is comparable to the older engine it replaced as far as functionality, but not having to constantly repair the truck will be a huge benefit for the department.

“We’re grateful to the residents of Carter County for voting to continue to support the fire departments with a sales tax to allow us to buy this kind of equipment because it can put a real burden on us and volunteer departments and what not trying to come up with that kind of money for a new engine,” Woydziak said.