Published December 3, 2014

High hopes for new fire engine

Courtsey The Wiregrass Farmer
Turner County Fire Chief Robby Royal has high hopes that a new round of grants will see Turner County get a new firefighting truck.

The department has applied for grants in the past, but applied for the money to get fire knockers. The County recently received several fire knockers from the Forestry Department. Chief Royal also said he has studied past approved applications and learned fire knockers don’t often get approved.

This time, he’s going to apply for a new engine.

“We have only one NFA (National Fire Academy) compliant engine, a 2005. ISO (Insurance Services Office) does not recognize any built before 1992,” he said. ISO is the national agency which rates fire departments. The ISO rating is then used by insurance companies to set property insurance rates.

Chief Royal said Turner County has a “good shot” at getting a new truck at a total cost of around $250,000. The grant will pay for 95 percent of that, leaving Turner County to pay around $12,500, at the quarter-million price tag.

Chief Royal said he expects the actual cost to be a bit less, which would also drop Turner County’s matching share of the grant.

The County Commission said he should apply for the grant. Under the grant terms and the delivery schedule for new fire trucks, the County will budget it’s 5 percent share in the 2015-16 fiscal year budget.

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