West Routt’s newest ambulance comes equipped with night vision
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — West Routt Fire Protection District’s newest ambulance will help save lives as well as the backs of firefighters loading patients into the back.
Assistant Chief Trevor Guire applied for a grant from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment that funded 90 percent of the ambulance’s $178,000 cost.
“He should be given a lot of credit for this,” Chief Dal Leck said.
The grant funding comes from motor vehicle registration fees.
“It’s really been helpful to departments,” Leck said.
The new ambulance replaces one that has been used by the department for 18 years and has some serious problems with the engine.
The new ambulance is equipped with night vision that will help firefighters see hazards in the dark while they are responding to medical calls and taking patients to the hospital.
“That will help us save a few animals,” Leck said.
A beefy bumper will be installed for added protection.
There is a track built into the back of the ambulance that will help load the patient and stretcher.
“If someone is obese, we don’t have to subject ourselves to possible injury,” Leck said.
Taxpayer dollars and $500 donations from Mountain Valley Bank and Hayden Mercantile were used to pay for what the grant funds did not cover.
Radios still need to be installed, and then the ambulance will be inspected.
“Once we get the state’s blessing, we can put it on the road,” Leck said.
Leck will then have two reliable ambulances to respond to medical calls, which are about two thirds of the fire district’s annual calls.
Last year, the fire district had about 200 medical calls.
In April, the fire district expects to receive another new piece of firefighting equipment that has been on their wish list for years.
Tax dollars will be used to buy the $936,000 rescue truck that will be equipped with a 77-foot ladder.
Ferrara Fire Apparatus in Louisiana has been posting updates on its website as the new rescue truck is being built.
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