New fire engines that are smaller, more responsive to drive, faster to set up and with greater rescue capabilities including an Ultra High Pressure Pump have joined the West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service fleet.
Seven new 12 tonne Medium Rescue Pumps (MRP) appliances will now be stationed at five fire stations around the county.
The new appliances are narrower, shorter, have a lower design and a tighter turning circle which will allow better access when attending incidents in more urban, built-up areas where road space is often at a premium and allow easier manoeuvring.
They also include folding roof ladders, improved reflective strips known as ‘Battenburg’ and other enhanced blue light safety features. In addition, there are 360-degree cameras and recording for the driver.
The appliances will be at the following stations:
• Worthing (two of the appliances will be based here)
• East Grinstead
• Haywards Heath
• The final appliance will be kept by the service’s Operational Training Team to ensure crews are familiar with the new appliances and its capabilities.
The new appliances are an £1.7m investment from West Sussex County Council.
Frontline firefighters were key in drawing up the specification for the new appliances to ensure optimum operational capability.
The appliances were built by coachbuilder Emergency One and are designed to complement the service’s larger, 18 tonne Scania fire engines.
Paul Marshall, Leader of West Sussex County Council, said: “I am delighted to be able to hand over the keys to these seven brand new fire engines today, and know that they will allow our firefighters to help keep their communities safe for many years to come.”
West Sussex County Council Cabinet Member for Fire & Rescue and Communities, Duncan Crow, said: “A lot of work has gone into the design and procurement of these fantastic new fire engines, with our own fleet team working very closely with the manufacturers to ensure we have an appliance that fits our firefighters’ requirements when attending an emergency incident. It is fantastic to see the finished result, and I know that our crews are very much looking forward to getting their new engines on the run.”
Chief Fire Officer of West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service, Sabrina Cohen-Hatton, said: “These new appliances represent a significant investment in the fire and rescue service from the county council, and will ensure that our firefighters have the very latest equipment to allow them to respond to emergencies, quickly, efficiently and safely.”