Barrington Countryside Fire District buys $425K Tender

Joseph Cyganowski/For Sun-Times Media

Joseph Cyganowski/For Sun-Times Media

By: Bridget O’Shea | | @OSheaBridget

Continuing to expand its fleet, Barrington Countryside Fire Protection District trustees budgeted $425,000 last week for the purchase of a new fire engine.

Earlier in January, the board approved the purchase of two Ford F-150 pickup trucks for equipment transportation and two Ford Expedition to be used as shift command vehicles.

Fire district officials said the vehicles will improve firefighters’ ability to protect residents as it operates independent of the village of Barrington’s Fire Department. The long-term fleet expansion plan does not call for increased taxes, district officials said.

The fire engine is scheduled for delivery in the fall.

“The new fire engine will hold 1,250 gallons of water and be able to carry larger diameter hoses for fire suppression activities,” District Fire Chief Jeff Swanson said. “In addition, the vehicle’s raised cab roof will provide more room for BCFPD firefighters and paramedics and their equipment, and improve their safety.”

The new engine is being built by Florida-based E-One, a worldwide manufacturer of emergency vehicles. The engine will replace an older pumper that will remain in service as a reserve engine.

In total, the new vehicles were budgeted to cost no more than $546,275. District officials said they were able to save taxpayers nearly $30,000 on the purchases by using state purchase pricing.

“Long before the BCFPD began independent operations, the board realized that we would need to upgrade our vehicles to meet the needs of our district,” District President Tom Rowan said. “We committed ourselves to make those improvements without raising taxes on residents.”

In 2012, the district retired more than $1 million in long-term bond obligations which had been originally raised to fund the purchase of the district’s Lake Barrington fire station, officials said. The move saved about $661,000 in interest payments that would have been due over the next 20 years, according to the district.

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