Port Coquitlam Fire and Emergency Services Unveils New Fire Truck

PORT COQUITLAM, BC – May 19, 2023…Port Coquitlam Fire and Emergency Services marked the beginning of service for their new 2023 rescue truck with a Push-In ceremony.

Port Coquitlam Fire and Emergency Service members and Fire Chief Roberts Kipps unveiled the City’s newest piece of specialized firefighting and rescue equipment on April 29. The new rescue truck will provide the Port Coquitlam Fire Department with much-needed operational versatility and extra protection over the coming decades.

“The addition of this new rescue truck represents a significant enhancement to the city’s emergency service response currently provided in our community. This resource will become more important for the city as we continue to grow in the years to come and this will ensure our community continues to be safe and protected,” said Mayor Brad West. “We continue to invest in the safety of our residents and deliver high quality emergency services.”

The new addition will be replacing one of its aging trucks as it is nearing the end of its service life. Fire apparatus standards dictate that front-line fire trucks or apparatus that respond to emergencies must be replaced every 15 years. The cost for the new rescue truck is approximately $980,000. Council supported the funding as part of the City’s fleet program.

While a long-time tradition in the fire service, a Push-In ceremony was conducted for the brand-new rescue truck with the Port Coquitlam fire department, a first for this fire department. The Push-In ceremony recognizes the arrival of a new fire engine which officially puts the engine into service and ready to respond. The ceremony dates back to the late 1800s when fire departments used hand-drawn pumpers and horse-drawn equipment. Upon returning to the station after a fire call, the horses could not easily back the equipment into the station. The firefighters work as a team to push the engine into the bay by hand.

“This tradition solidifies the importance of this new vehicle and the value it will bring to our department and community throughout the years to come.” said Fire Chief Robert Kipps.

Port Coquitlam’s new Rescue truck was built with a Spartan cab and chassis locally procured through SVI in Abbotsford. This truck was custom designed by an internal firefighter committee drawing experience from suppression firefighters and drivers. Deputy Chief Jeff Sweet, lead the build process and leaned heavily on his 30 plus years of response experience to plan how the truck should be built.

“Having this new, innovative and well-equipped rescue truck will provide more firefighter safety and further enhance the services the Fire Department members deliver to the community,” said Cllr. Steve Darling, Council’s designate for community safety matters. “It is an asset for our community for years to come.”

The new truck has upgraded safety features compared to the current unit. It has front and side curtain airbags, back up and side cameras for better visual of obstacles, truck roll over protection for firefighters, and a full set of integrated rear stairs compared to a vertical ladder on older units that allows for a firefighter to access roof top storage safer.

The department has adopted the Clean Cab Initiative feature which protects firefighters from cancer causing contaminates on a firefighter’s gear and clothing after a fire. Attributes of this new initiative include:

  • Enhanced exterior storage for contaminated gear,
  • Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) stored outside of the cab
  • Hard surfaces and non-porous seat material to ensure that decontaminating and cleaning the cab can be easily achieved.

All of these features are designed to help protect firefighters from the numerous cancers associated with firefighting.

The new rescue truck is longer and taller than the original 2005 model which provides a higher ability to get above and around overhead obstructions. It provides 35 per cent more storage which affords the department the ability to respond with more equipment for any emergency firefighters may come across. The rescue truck will be stationed at Fire Hall #1 at 1725 Broadway Street.

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Ximena Ibacache
Manager of Communications & Administrative Services
City of Port Coquitlam
Tel 604.927.5499
Email ibacachex@portcoquitlam.ca