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Lindsey company ready to roll with new tanker

March 22, 2011

The Lindsey Fire Company took delivery of its new $277,000 Freightliner tanker Monday. Members of the fire company on hand for the delivery of the truck were (from left): Don Ross, Mike Porada, firefighters; Pete Pape, president; Ken Bishop, vice-president; and Ben Bishop, and Matt Clinger, firefighters. (Photo by Larry McGuire/The Punxsutawney Spirit)

PUNXSUTAWNEY — Out with the old and in with the new, as the Lindsey Fire Company received its new tanker Monday.

Lynn Kolaja, of Kolaja Fire Equipment Sales in Union City, said he drove the truck from Delavan, Wis., where it was built by U.S. Tanker.
Kolaja said the new tanker was constructed on a Freightliner commercial chassis; has a 3,000-gallon tank; a 3,000 gallon port-a-tank; and a 500-gallon-per- minute pump, which will allow firefighters to attach hose, if need be.

The truck is also equipped with the latest in LED lighting technology — which will provide firefighters with better visibility when dumping water at the scene — including three rear-view mounted cameras so the driver can observe the dumping operations from the cab.

In rural areas, tankers play the key apparatus role in the ability to fight fires.

The Punxsutawney Fire Department, even though it operates in a borough with fire hydrants, also serves Bell and Young Townships, where fires are mostly fought with a tanker shuttle.

Lindsey firefighters are often called for mutual aid with other rural fire departments that have few or no hydrants.

Lindsey Assistant Chief Tom Gaffney said he applied for and received a FEMA Fire Act Grant, which paid for a large portion of the $270,000 grant.

Lindsey’s old tanker, a 1972 Ford with 395,000 miles on it, carried only 1,800 gallons of water. It was sold last week.

The fire company paid for a portion of the new truck.

(Editor’s note: This piece is one in a series of “Familiar Faces Friday” features to be written by Spirit reporter...
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