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  • First Responder Vehicle

    Hi, my name is Chris and I am a meber of the Hampden-Sydney Volunteer Fire Dept. We also have a first responder unit and that is why I am posting a message. We currrently use an old blazer as our truck and we are hoping to upgrade to a better apparatus but we do not have the money to buy a new one. I was asked to look into options we have for getting something better than what we use now. The idea of using a blazer is not bad, it is a little small but functional. However, the blazer we have is in disrepair and is in such a state that the amount of money needed to restore it is more than it is worth. I am hoping that i might find someone out there whose company is replacing a relativley new tahoe or suburban(90's) and they wish to sell or donate the vehicle. One company close to us had a suburban given to them from a company in Virginia Beach. If you are within reasonable driving distance of virginia(pretty much the east coast) and are willing to sell or donate our company an ems/first responder vehicle please contact me. My email is [email protected]. Thank you for your time reading this and good luck and God bless.

  • #2
    Another thought

    Have you checked with your local utility providers?

    Our light rescue is a retired power company service van. It wasn't donated, but we purchased it at auction for a very good price. I don't think we could have found a better vehicle for the money. In addition to having lots of interior volume, it had a ladder rack already in place and internal, side mounted cabinets perfect for supplies. All we had to do was add lights, lettering, siren, and radio. Unless you're stuck on the SUV solution, check around. Maybe the power, phone, or cable company will help you out.


    • #3

      I know you're on a tight budget, but . .

      1) Check out the Virginia State Surplus Property web site.

      There are currently no SUV's (there were a couple of weeks ago), but there are 2 Utility Body PU's (one a '95 with less that 25K miles for $8,300).

      You can also contact them and tell them what you're looking for and they will put you on a wait list and notify you when they get something you might be interested in.

      2) Check the Virginia State Vehicle Contracts.

      I know that a new vehicle is a lot of $$ but you end up with a vehicle that you know wasn't abused and it has a waranty if you have problems.

      SUV - Small: Explorer XLS 4X4 $22,976
      SUV - Medium: Tahoe 4X4 $26,420
      SUV - Large: Suburban 4X4 $29,290

      Also, you can buy used vehicles for 8% Markup from Kelly Blue Book Trade-In-Value - their wholesaler is listed on the web site.

      Once you find the vehicle of your choice, let me suggest Pro Tech Custom Designs for all the upfitting work.

      We just did a '03 Tahoe (state contract - very sweet deal for the price) and had them purchase and install the entire lighting & warning package. All we supplied was the cell phone & radio equipment - they did the rest.

      See http://n2dfire.tripod.com/response3.html for pics.

      Best of luck with whatever you get. Stop back by and share pictures when you get the new ride.
      Take Care - Stay Safe - God Bless


      • #4
        I agree with my colleagues here, but I'm also rather curious what your intentions are with this truck. How many people do you wish to accommodate, and what about equipment? What are your current needs and the projected needs of the department? Will a Tahoe do it, or are you REALLY needing something bigger or heavier? I mean, we often make do with whatever we get, but I would hate to shoot ONLY for a Tahoe and get that wittled down to a tricycle & bell by town budget committees. When you formally pitch the needs of a department & offer all the support on why such things are being suggested, you're likely to gain the trust of people who write checks. Now granted, the difference could very well mean the NEW HEAVY RESCUE gets downsized to a new light rescue with a crew cab. You're not going to know until you ask. Good luck out there!
        Of course, that's just my opinion. I could be wrong
        Dennis Miller


        • #5
          Thank you all for your insight into what I should do. I had no clue where to start when asked to look for a new vehicle and yall have given me some great ideas. The reason we need this vehicle is because our ems program works with the rescue squad and we are supposed to arrive on scene for any ems call in our district before the amublance so that we may begin treatment and give them a description of what to expect. It would be alot nicer if we could settle for anything but we must have an suv with 4wheel drive becasue our district is comprised of alot of dirt roads that get nasty during the winter. We have an old blazer that does the job well but it is getting old and needs alot of work. we have run into an increasing amount of breakage that should not happen and it is just time to get something newer. At times some drivers are weary of driving the vehicle becasue of a lack of trust that it will be safe. We wish we could do patient transport as well as heavy rescue but becasue we are volunteer and alot of our manpower comes from students we cannot take on that responsibility when we may have ten or fifteen certified emts one year and then the next year we could have only two guys qualified. Tanks again for helpoing me out your suggestions could be exactly what my department needed.
          God Bless


          • #6
            If you can't come up with $ for a purchase and a Blazer will work contact your state forester. There a MANY M1009 CUCV available from miliatary surplus system. These are mid/late 80s diesel Blazers. Not as much demand for as for the pickups versions. Everywhere from 25000 to 100000mi on them. Those available now are mostly out of guard/reserve so have had regular maintenance and mostly road use.

            State forester can obtain from the miltary and transfer to your FD on permanent loan. You can do anything you want to the vehicle (except sell it). When you don't want it any longer you turn it back to the forester.


            • #7
              most of you guys are lucky I'm from leyden, mass. and we do not have a first responder vehicle. one person in 12 hour shifts takes the bag a carries ituseing there own car, because fema will not give us a grant we have h oles in our gear our roof is falling a part. you guys have it lucky.


              • #8
                Originally posted by tylerdeyo
                most of you guys are lucky I'm from leyden, mass. and we do not have a first responder vehicle. one person in 12 hour shifts takes the bag a carries ituseing there own car, because fema will not give us a grant we have h oles in our gear our roof is falling a part. you guys have it lucky.
                In the Peoples Republic of Taxachusetts government is short on $???

                Go see a local new car dealer (or used). Ask him if he will loan you, for one year, the next operable old POS high mile 1980s minivan he takes as a tradein. You insure it. There are a million of the things out there and used minivans have little value, particually older ones. Dealer may even give it to you (he can take a deduction of op to $5000 without an appraisal so in theory he can make profit from the deal). Guess what we have for a rescue vehicle?

                FEMA is not the tooth fairy/Santa Claus. Patch you own holes and fix your roof. Then go raise some local $. Work the military surplus system (call your state forester).
                Last edited by neiowa; 10-31-2003, 02:51 PM.


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