In addition to the on board foam eduction system, the new engines have a high volume air compressor that injects air into the fire hoses. The air mixes with the water and foam and allows firefighters to adjust the thickness of the foam. The system is referred to as a “Compressed Air Foam System” or CAFS. Fire engines equipped with CAFS systems increase the amount of fire that can be extinguished with the same amount of water. Battalion Chief Johnson said, “The water carried on the fire engine should extinguish three times more fire when using CAFS than water alone”.
Another advantage to CAFS is how much less the fire hose weighs. Fire hoses using CAFS weigh about half of what a hose filled with water weighs. This reduced weight allows firefighters to work with less fatigue.
In addition to the fire engines, the fire district also purchased two water tenders which carry 3000 gallons of water each. The new tenders will be placed at the Dixonville and Melrose stations where there are limited fire hydrants available.
The water tenders cost $273,630.00 each and should last 15-20 years.
Lastly the district purchased two four wheel drive wildland firefighting trucks (brush rigs). The brush rigs are equipped with a water tank and pump and are designed to drive off road and extinguish grass and brush fires. The trucks are Ford F-450 Diesel trucks with a flatbed and utility boxes. The Water tank is a 250 gallon water tank with foam capability.
The brush rigs cost $61,899.00 each and should last 12-15 years.