Washington County fire company pays it forward with truck donation
HAMPTON – The Hampton Volunteer Fire Company got a truck in 2010 from Fort Edward for just $1. Now that they got a new one, they can donate that truck to someone else.
“We were very fortunate. Ray Energy is a propane company, and they donated $25,000, which enabled us to purchase a new engine rescue truck – new to us – from Greenwich Fire,” Hampton Volunteer Fire Company President Richard Cole said.
They found a lot of companies are in desperate need of equipment.
They decided to donate to Alpha One Fire and Rescue on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota.
“They cover 3,600 square miles,” Cole said. “They had 750 calls in the last six months of last year, and in the whole area, they have one truck.”
They know from experience what a gift this will be to a small company.
“It’s always meaningful when a company is able to get new equipment, especially something like a fire truck,” Cole said. “A new fire truck like this, brand-new, is $600,000 or more. And used, they’re still very expensive. And for a small company operating on a limited budget or no budget, it’s a tremendous gift to be able to give to them.”
They’d like to have the truck arrive ready to go. Other companies are donating hose and ladders and other equipment.
“We’ve gotten 1,000 feet of 4-inch hose from Whitehall. We’re getting tips and some other hose from Putnam. We’re getting ladders and possibly some air packs from some other companies,” Cole said.
“They talk about how we’re a brotherhood and all that, and it’s nice to see all these other companies coming together to help,” said Matthew Pratt, Hampton Volunteer Fire Company Secretary.
Now they have to get it there. They’re raising money to take it by flatbed, 1900 miles away.
Rural Hampton Volunteer built itself up over the years, now with an engine rescue and tanker for each side of town.
“It’s been very eye-opening for the members of my fire company. We’re a small rural fire company, and we have struggled over the years to get our budget up and when we saw how impoverished some of the other companies were it really made us grateful for what we have,” Cole said.
Anyone with equipment for the truck, especially older air packs, can contact Hampton Volunteer Fire Company President Richard Cole at (518) 812-4205.