Pittsfield board OKs funding for fire engine refurbishment, police department security cameras
Pittsfield Township’s 1998 Engine 2 is going to get a much-needed facelift after 14,698 engine hours and more than 150,000 miles.
The engine has “corrosion problems, fading and bubbling paint, failing mechanisms and structural and electrical problems,” Matt Harshberger, director of public safety, wrote in his background explanation for the about $70,000 budget request.
“Engine 2 is in dire need of major body and structural repairs,” he said.
In addition to the work, the engine will also be relegated to reduced use and be deployed when the primary apparatus is out of service for repairs.
Harshberger said the engine is close to the end of its service life and will be moved into “reserve” status, allowing it to continue in “short-term primary use with several years of added capacity as a reserve unit.”
During the past six years, more than $118,000 has been spent by the township in maintenance and repair costs, including $7,500 this year.
Once the engine is moved to a reserve capacity, repair and maintenance costs also will be reduced, he said.
Currently, Engine 11 is the department’s reserve engine, and Harshberger expects that the township can get between $25,000 and $30,000 when it’s sold and replaced by Engine 2.
“I’ve never seen a (fire) engine with 150,000 miles on it,” said Clerk Alan Israel. “It shows how this department takes care of its equipment.”
Harshberger offered trustees a comparison chart of engines and ladder trucks in neighboring fire departments, which included Ann Arbor’s 1999 engine that has 4,300 engine hours on it and 65,000 miles, and is already used as a back-up. The city’s 1999 ladder truck has 3,400 engine hours and 72,000 miles, and this apparatus is still in service.
Ypsilanti Township has a 1999 engine with 6,181 engine hours and 79,100 miles that’s still in service and a 1999 ladder truck with 4,802 engine hours on it and 63,600 miles, which is still in service.
Meanwhile, Ann Arbor Township’s 1998 engine had 50,000 miles on it and its 1996 engine had 61,000 miles logged and both were sold.
Trustee Gerald Krone asked why the township didn’t just purchase a new engine, and Harshberger said the department needed an engine in reserve when a primary engine was being repaired.
By a unanimous vote Wednesday night, the Pittsfield Township Board approved the request.
In another public safety item, the board unanimously approved a request by Police Chief Gordy Schick to apply for a $5,000 grant to help pay for security cameras for police interview rooms.
The department plans to apply for a risk reduction grant through the Michigan Township Par Plan and will pay the remaining $6,800.
"The Par Plan offers a grant program, with an award of 45,000, applicable toward effective risk management and loss control techniques, to include security cameras," according to the resolution, which was also unanimously adopted.