(Oliver Fire Dept. / Facebook)

It takes a town to build a truck: The Oliver Fire Department gets creative

Ingenuity and local connections played an important role in the upgrading fire truck

The Oliver Fire Department has a new piece of equipment thanks to the creativity of a town.

While most fire trucks are purchased through specialized and dedicated fire apparatus firms, this truck is unique.

The department was recently given a mandate and budget from the Town of Oliver to find a used truck to replace their worn-out 1991 GMC.

The “Truck Procurement Committee” sat down in April 2020 and reviewed the limited options. There was virtually nothing available that would not require international travel, major modification, or prohibitively expensive ferrying costs.

READ MORE: Oliver Fire Chief looks back on 30-years of service

The market for this kind of specialty equipment is narrow, so the committee got inventive.

They decided to build their own water tender and do so by using local connections to find the right people to work on the specialized project.

Richard Simmons, a retired Oliver Fire Department member and owner of Rapid Industries, sourced the uniquely suited cab and chassis. Simmons also performed the weight and balance calculations, tank installation and safety compliance work.

Munckhof Manufacturing constructed a customized truck body to the committee’s specifications, including the required electrical and plumbing work.

Dennis Munckhof, co-owner of Munckhof Manufacturing and active Oliver firefighter, said the end result was something even better than a new truck.

“I could see we didn’t have a lot of good options available within our budget. I floated the suggestion that maybe we could reuse some good parts off the old unit, find a proper cab and chassis, and build ourselves a unit for Oliver, in Oliver,” Munckhof said. “In the end, we got one hell of a truck. It’s not a new truck, but it looks like a new truck, it runs like a new truck, and it didn’t cost us a new truck, so that’s a win.”

Additional local specialists who lent their talents to the project include paint by Jeff Muller of Oliver Car and Truck, tires from Tread Sled, vinyl work by Munday Media and parts purchased from suppliers across town.

READ MORE: Oliver Fire Department spreading holiday cheer around community



jesse.day@pentictonwesternnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

firefighters

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. has cleared the Lumby RCMP of any wrongdoing after a missing person was found deceased in December 2020. (IIO photo)
Police watchdog says Lumby RCMP played no role in missing person’s death

The body was found by a family member shortly after the RCMP suspended their search

The Dixie Fried Hep Katz are featured in episode four of the Focus Online Series, March 4-7. (Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre photo)
Okanagan talents shine under Vernon spotlight

12-year-old from Lake Country, Enderby singer-songwriter-guitarist and Kelowna duo in Focus

School bus fees are being charged to all riders in the Vernon School District. (Courtesy photo)
Parents pressure Vernon school board to curb bus fee hike

More than 1,200 signatures on petition against $200 rider fees, to be discussed at board meeting

Vernon’s Vasek Pospisil has been named one of five winners of PacificSport Okanagan’s Community Sport Hero 2021 athletic excellence award. (AP Photo/Bernat Armangue)
Vernon’s Vasek Pospisil, Elena Gaskell, honoured for excellence

Tennis player and freestyle skier win PacificSport Okanagan awards

An off-duty Vernon Taxi driver got a 24-hour licence suspension, vehicle towed, after failing a standardized field sobriety test around 1:40 a.m. Tuesday, March 2, 2021. (John E Green - Facebook)
Vernon Taxi towed after driver suspected impaired

Off-duty cab towed from McDonald’s drive-thru early Tuesday morning

The images are of Bald Eagles feeding.
Photos: Birds of prey

Princeton photographer captures compelling photos of a Bald Eagle breakfast

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Older rental apartments are prime candidates for renovations, and could result in lost affordable housing stock. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
B.C.’s renoviction overhaul a good start, but won’t preserve affordable stock, lawyer says

And still no protection for people who can’t pay rent due to COVID-19

Kamloops This Week
Cause of Kamloops landfill fire may never be known

Fire investigators are dealing with too much destruction in too large an area

(Photo by Marissa Baecker/Shoot the Breeze)
B.C. WHL teams to hit the ice with Kelowna, Kamloops hub cities

Kelowna, Kamloops centres chosen to host B.C. WHL teams for 24-game regular season

Okanagan College
Okanagan College holds March Madness fundraiser

Money from the fundraiser will go to support the Okanagan College Foundation

Most Read