Abbeville gets a deal on ladder firetruck from Japan

Abbeville Mayor Michael Estes is proud of the town's volunteer firefighters.

"I tell everyone that we have the best fire department in the state," he said.

The best is subjective but Abbeville does have a new powerful tool in the firehouse.

The town didn't have a pumper truck with a ladder that made an imprint on its insurance rating.

Fire Chief Larry Brown has decades of experience in the field.  He says they've slowly earned better fire ratings.

"They always told us we don't have anything to protect the courthouse well now we do so I'm hoping next time we get evaluated we'll be a three and possibly a two," Brown projected.

A truck like this can have a wow affect but some may have wondered how folks in Wilcox County could foot the price tag.

"There's no way that if we had bought this new this would have been a half a million dollars so there's no way a city our size could afford something like this," Estes admitted.

The Mayor got creative, he jumped on a government surplus site and spotted a used rig.

"This actually came from Japan, he said smiling at the rig. Having the logo from Japan just reminds us that it came from Japan and how we were really blessed to get this."

The town even won a national award for their passion and persistence in purchasing the vehicle.

They mayor says they're not done with the website and they've compiled a wish list that includes a couple of new police cruisers.

Any town can purchase all kinds of equipment from the federal surplus property site.

But there are some restrictions.

The feds showed us a spreadsheet and another reason Abbeville received the award this week is that they've bought all kinds of things from toolboxes to pistols second hand.

They've spent about $46,000 overall and received items valued at close to a million dollars.

 

© 2017 WMAZ-TV


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