The St. Clair Fire Protection District is looking to purchase one, possibly two, new quick response truck as the board unveiled two bids at Tuesday night’s meeting.

The first bid, announced by Board President David Berkel, was from Danko Emergency Equipment Co. in the amount of $163,765, and the second bid was from Deep South Fire Trucks in the amount of $176,268. Fire Chief Craig Sullivan and Assistant Chief Mike Kelley will review the bids and bring a recommendation to the board at the next meeting, Dec. 10 at 6 p.m.

In 2017, the district purchased a used quick response truck, which is stationed at Fire House 1, according to Sullivan. He told The Missourian that the quick response truck is used for calls that do not require a large pumper truck, including minor vehicle wrecks, vehicle fires, EMS calls, dumpster fires, electric wires down and brush fires.

The quick response truck has reduced the use of the aging pumper fire trucks by more than half of the district’s call load, Sullivan said.

The district’s newest pumper is a 2010 model that has approximately 61,000 miles on it, he added.

“We’ve got aging pumpers,” Sullivan said. “We needed to come up with a solution to try to give the bigger, more expensive fire trucks, some of the load off to reduce maintenance costs, (and) wear and tear.”

A brand new basic pumper truck would cost roughly half a million dollars.

“They’re extremely expensive and that is a fire truck that would be functional for us. It doesn’t have a whole lot of frills on it, but it is a truck that would be functional for the way we operate,” Sullivan said.

He noted that the goal is to purchase two quick response trucks for Fire House 1 and 2, and have the current quick response truck transferred to Fire House 3.

“If we add these two quick response trucks to the fleet, then we can continue to try to save money,” Sullivan said. “We’re going to have to come up with a funding mechanism to replace these big fire trucks that are going to cost $500,000-$600,000.”

The two new quick response trucks would be budgeted for next year, according to Sullivan. He said it takes about six months to build one truck.

At next month’s meeting, Sullivan said he will recommend the district to purchase one or two trucks from either Danko Emergency Equipment Co. or Deep South Fire Trucks.

The district’s current quick response truck includes 300 gallons of water, 20 gallons of class A foam concentrate, EMS equipment, a rescue extrication tool and brush fire equipment.

The quick response trucks that the district is considering will have similar features and equipment, according to Sullivan.

He clarified that the pumper fire trucks still respond first to all structure fires and motor vehicle rescues.