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Katy purchases new fire truck

February 3, 2019

Later this year, the Katy Fire Department will become home to a new aerial ladder fire truck to better help it respond to fires at an increasing number of multi-story hotels in the city and to replace an aging, oft-repaired vehicle.

Katy City Council on Jan. 28 authorized Mayor Chuck Brawner to enter into a financing agreement with Government Capital Corp. to purchase the truck and related equipment for $1,501,435. Delivery is anticipated in 10 months.

Assistant Fire Chief Kenneth Parker told City Council that the 2004 ladder truck was out of service 128 days last year. Officials said repair costs last year for the truck totaled $47,000.

In 2019, the truck has been out of service since Jan. 14, he said. Because it is an older vehicle, it’s become more difficult to find replacement parts, he said. For the latest repair, he explained that the valve that controls hydraulics needs to be remanufactured.

The department can use its quint, which is a truck that has a fire pump, water tank and aerial ladder or elevating platform. Parker also said the department has mutual aid agreements with neighboring departments.

“We’ll make do with what we have,” said Parker. Once the new truck arrives, the older vehicle will be used as backup.

Ward A Councilman Frank Carroll III said purchase of the new equipment is necessary for the city to protect its ISO rating.

The Insurance Service Office evaluates fire departments taking into consideration various factors including training and equipment. The rating a department receives can impact the home insurance premiums paid by residents protected by the department. Ratings range from 1, which is the best, to 10. The Katy Fire Department has an ISO rating of 2.

The city will pay a fixed interest rate of 3.782 percent for the Pierce-custom aerial fire truck. Ten annual payments will begin in March 2020. The payment amount is $150,143.58.

karen.zurawski@chron.com

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