Buffalo Fire seeking two new vehicles, some equipment still out of service

Buffalo Fire seeking two new vehicles, some equipment still out of service

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The Buffalo Fire Department will request two additional pieces of equipment at Tuesday’s Buffalo Common Council meeting, which would bring the total of recent purchases to more than a dozen.

Two Ford F-350, used to allow first responders a quicker initial response to calls, will cost nearly $287,000, according to Buffalo Fire Commissioner William Renaldo.

Among other recent acquisitions, a new pumper will be delivered to Engine 2 within the next two weeks.

Renaldo said these purchases were not knee-jerk reactions.

“The fleet itself was in good shape, to me it was more of a false narrative,” said Renaldo. “The apparatus we had at the time of the blizzard, I mean all these vehicles that we’re talking about aside from the UTV’s, the purchasing process began before the November blizzard.”

Four new UTV’s are expected to go into service by the end of October.

“The UTV’s were found to be very useful following the November and December storm, so we thought it would be a good idea to get those into the fleet,” Renaldo added.

However, a blizzard report conducted by NYU said Buffalo’s emergency vehicle fleet was “not sufficient” to respond to the blizzard. Commissioner Renaldo taking heat earlier this year from the firefighters union over the aging fleet.

“The age of the fleet and of apparatus has affected our safety and the safety of the citizens and has made it difficult to accomplish our main mission of fire suppression,” said union president Vincent Ventresca.

Renaldo said some of the vehicles stranded during the blizzard remain out of service for repairs and adds it’s an on-going process.

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