When the Washington Volunteer Fire Department arose from the ashes of a heated political squabble last year, one thing remained: the need for new equipment.
California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection area chief Tony Clarabut had pointed to the need of a working emergency vehicle and then helped fill the gap. John Scull of the Bureau of Land Management office said Clarabut asked BLM if they could help.
Earlier this week, BLM presented new Washington Fire Chief Mike Stewart with a used vehicle that can be driven for rescues, small fires and medical emergencies. The 1995 Ford truck is equipped with a 200-gallon water tank, fire hose, pump and a foam unit.
"It's a vast improvement in our capabilities," said Stewart, also an engineer with the Nevada County Consolidated Fire District. "This replaces the brush engine that CDF found insufficient."
Stewart said the vehicle is just one more step of improvement for the department, which has three new firefighters in training and three new emergency medical technicians.