2009-01-08 / News

Jamestown fire truck temporarily out of service

By Adrienne Downing

A training accident left a crack in the cab and a damaged windshield on Ladder Truck 1. Photo by Andrea von Hohenleiten A training accident left a crack in the cab and a damaged windshield on Ladder Truck 1. Photo by Andrea von Hohenleiten The Jamestown Fire Department will be using temporary backup coverage from Newport and North Kingstown while Ladder Truck 1 is temporarily out of service for repairs.

The ladder truck was damaged during a training accident on Dec. 18, and fire department offi- cials have been working with a fire truck manufacturer and the insurance company to get the repair done in the most efficient manner possible.

"We are just waiting for Greenwood Fire Apparatus and the insurance company to get together, so if there are any questions about what repairs or parts are covered, they can talk directly to each other and I don't have to get in the middle of it," Fire Chief Jim Bryer said. Greenwood first had to determine if the damage was in the scope of what the company could repair, the fire chief said.

The accident occurred during a routine Thursday night training exercise in East Passage Estates. According to Bryer, part of the training included extending the ladder over a pond. "During the exercise, one of the firefighters thought they detected an oil leak from the truck and opened the cab to look at the engine," Bryer said. "Because the truck was sitting on uneven ground, the cab apparently did not seat properly when it was closed back up. But, it was dark and it was not an obvious difference that someone would have noticed."

When the exercise ended and the crew put the ladder down, it did not close all the way, Bryer

said. "It was a complete accident. When they tried to store the ladder, one side of the cab was up just enough that it twisted the cab."

The truck sustained a damaged windshield and the cab was cracked. "The ladder still works and the truck is drivable, but it does not have a windshield, so we can't have someone drive it around," the fire chief said.

Although the incident was a first for the JFD, it was not the first time the department's insurance company has seen a similar occurrence.

"Greenwood has a replacement truck we can use, so we are just waiting for the insurance company to tell us if they will cover it," Bryer said. In the meantime, the fire chief has notified the North Kingstown, Newport and Newport Navy fire departments that Jamestown is without a ladder truck and may need backup.

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