Whether fighting fires or responding to medical emergencies, firefighters are the heroes that don’t wear capes. And like a lot of superheroes they couldn’t do what they do without an excellent support system.
Ed Andrade, a 31-year veteran mechanic for the Santa Fe Springs Fire Department, is a part of the team that keeps the department up and running. Handling everything from routine oil changes to technology integration, Ed ensures the firefighters can do their jobs every day without a hitch.
One of the department’s firetrucks recently needed an overhaul that required Ed to get creative with some Accuride slides.
Engine 811, the only ladder truck in the city’s fleet, was built by Pierce Manufacturing in Wisconsin with a 105’ aerial platform. The rig is a part of the department’s operations division which employs three division chiefs, 12 captains, and 51 fire suppression personnel that respond to over 3,100 service calls per year. That’s an average of eight calls per day.
As the mechanic for all the city’s firetrucks, Ed is responsible for seeing that all the department’s truck compartments mimic each other. This allows fire crews to go from truck to truck and still know where their equipment is.
In doing this, Ed came across a dilemma that caused him to tap into his knowledge of Accuride sliding solutions.
Firefighters have a number of tools that they may need at any given time including forcible entry tools and first-aid equipment. In this case, there was a compartment that carried electronic spreaders, cutters, and other auxiliary equipment.
Pictured below is the original setup that required the firefighter to bend down and lean into the cabinet to retrieve the rescue tools they needed. With the cutters and spreader weighing in at approximately 45-50 lbs. each, repeatedly performing this action over time causes wear and tear on the firefighter’s bodies.
“These are the only slides I found with a lock on them.
When I found them, I was in heaven!”
By mounting plastic brackets on steel panels, Ed found a way to mount the equipment efficiently. The next step would be making them accessible. Tapping into his knowledge of Accuride sliding solutions, Ed explored Accuride’s product catalog where he came across the 9308 lock-in/lock-out slide.
Using two custom steel panels mounted on Accuride’s recently enhanced 9308 slides, Ed created a solution that made it easier for firefighters to access their Hurst Rescue tools and other auxiliary tools.
Given each assembly weighs in at approximately 75lbs., the 600 lb. load rating on the 9308 heavy-duty slides was another added benefit to this application.
This now organized compartment makes an already difficult job a little easier for the men and women of the Santa Fe Springs Fire Department.
The 9308’s locking features proved to be the best solution for Engine 811. Equipped with a front-latch release the slide secures the panels in closed or open positions for extended access.
Chief Thomas McGauley and the other members of the department are glad to have the tools readily accessible while in the field.
Thanks to the Ed and the staff at the Santa Fe Springs Fire Department, the firefighters are able to do their jobs day in and day out without a hitch.
To learn more about our mobile sliding solutions, visit our markets page or give us a call. Our experienced engineers want to hear about your project.