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New Rescue Tools

February 25, 2011

Until recently Stafford County’s rescue tools came to you via an old ambulance, a utility truck, a pumper, and a trailer. That all changed when a custom rescue truck was purchased. The new rescue truck replaced the utility truck.

The plan is to purchase specialized rescue tools for the new rescue truck – ones we couldn’t possibly afford to outfit on all four rescue units. This plan took an unexpected catapult forward through the generosity of local Stafford County resident Carl Dudrey.

What happened was Dudrey became aware of a new line of rescue tools – tools that have some unique features. First, the tools were said to have the strongest cutting power of any rescue tool on the market. Second, the tools have the capability of quickly changing the tips. Dudrey was sold and offered to purchase the tools if Stafford County firefighters wanted them.

The reason added strength is important with rescue tools is because new vehicles are being built with metals that are far stronger than they’ve ever been. To prove or disprove that point, Stafford firefighters put the new tools – Champion Tools – to the test, using them side-by-side with existing tools.

Station Chief Jerry Sanders said, “The Champion tool was far superior. When the existing tool stalled in its track, the Champion tool never hesitated a bit.”

Interchangeability isn’t necessarily a feature that all firefighters believe in when it comes to rescue tools. With time being so critical, firefighters worry that changing the tips on rescue tools will steal away valuable time. So, Stafford firefighters also put this feature to the test.

Assistant Chief Shon Meschberger provided the feedback. Shon said, “Changing the tips took a maximum of eight seconds.” He also believes that a little bit of lubrication could even make the process faster. Furthermore, Shon stressed the importance of making all the cuts you anticipate with one tool tip before switching to another.

The Stafford County Fire Department sincerely appreciates Carl Dudrey’s generosity and they are excited about having the new equipment. While nobody hopes to use rescue tools, it’s comforting to know they are there if the need should arise.

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