By Jasmine Willis
PERKINSVILLE – Out with the old and in with the new at the local fire department.
Perkinsville Fire Department retired a 1993 fire truck and welcomed a 2021 model on July 16.
The entire community gathered with a mix of fire fighters, former members, and curious community members to see the first new truck in nearly 30 years.
Perkinsville Fire Chief, Walter Drum Jr. and Perkinsville Fire Fighter Bill Conrad drove her back all the way from Mayersdale, Pa. The new truck cost the district about $390,000.
“There is nothing wrong with the old truck. We just typically need to change out to the old trucks every 30 years. It was just time for a new one. The district saved a lot of money by getting this model, and we received some donations from the community. We will do the transfer of equipment from the old truck to the new one before we put it up for bids,” he said. “They were able to do the specifics we wanted on the new truck. It took over a year due to the specifics we requested. We used to just have the Jaws and now we have a multi-tool cutter as well. We have a new attack hose and nozzles. We have an attic ladder for the first time too.”
Drum said there are about 20 active members still passionate at the Perkinsville Fire Department. Most of them were excited to get a feel for the new truck when it came rolling into town.
Ray Sellers is head commissioner of the district. Drum said he did a lot of work to see this through for the fire department.
Drum pointed out the new gadgets on the truck that work the primer and foam unit. This will make it a lot easier for the fire fighters out on calls. It will draft water in seconds and mix the foam. This will save a lot of time.
Perkinsville Fire Fighter, Walter Drum Sr. is still active in the fire department after 50 years of service. He still answers calls in the late hours.
Perkinsville Fire Fighter, Alex Curry has been active for 55 years of service stretched between York and Perkinsville. Both men talked about what being a fire fighter has always meant to them.
Curry mentioned how there are times he is the only one in the truck and hopes someone is there to help when he answers a call. He still loves the job after all these years.
Drum Sr. and Curry are a couple of the oldest active members of the fire department.
Both men agreed they have seen some haunting things in their long career as fire fighters. What haunts them the most is accidents involving children.