The Lewiston Fire Department’s new Engine 3, a Pierce Ascendant with aerial ladder, is an impressive beast no matter how you look at it. But the rig cost the city nearly $1 million dollars and there are people who want to know how this truck is better than the old one, which lasted the city 22 years.
Lt. Rick Emmons is more than happy to help with that. The new truck is going to help firefighters work faster and more efficiently, he says, and in a vast variety of ways.
It starts with the heavy-duty aerial ladder, 107 feet long compared to the old truck’s 75-foot ladder.
“It’s much bigger than the old truck’s,” Emmons says. “It’s not always the height that we need. Oftentimes it’s the horizontal reach. We’re often the second or third to the fire and we have to park back a bit. We need that extra length to get to the buildings.”
That massive reach has already been put to good use, as it happens.