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L-Tank Weight Considerations

By Bill Adams Pundits and commentators expound on the firematic benefits of using L-shaped booster tanks on pumpers. Apparatus manufacturers (OEMs) promote rigs with “New York City style” low hosebeds. (See Apparatus Purchasing: FDNY-Style Hosebeds, http://www.fireapparatusmagazine.com/articles/print/volume-22/issue-9/features/apparatus-purchasing-fdny-style-hosebeds.html.) No side is taken ...

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Turning Radius and Tapered Bumpers

By Bill Adams All the purchasing specification said was, “The bumper shall be 95 inches wide with 45-degree corners and side plates.” Unless the reader is the preferred dealer who wrote the document, that statement has little to no intrinsic ...

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Town Clips the Purchasing Committee

By Bill Adams Many fire departments enjoy little to no oversight by political subdivisions that provide taxpayer financing for their apparatus purchases. In particular, volunteer entities often purchase what they want from who they want without political recourse or fiscal ...

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Is Fire Truck Sandbagging Ethical?

By Bill Adams Sandbagging is a term often heard when playing cards and sports. It’s a term that isn’t necessarily deceitful, although it can be. In the world of fire apparatus purchasing, sandbagging happens all the time, although it’s not ...

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Dimmable Warning Lights: Part 2

By Bill Adams “Dimmable Warning Lights” is a misleading title. I originally thought the proposed changes to National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1901, Standard for Automotive Fire Apparatus were to allow dimming warning lights in the blocking the right-of-way mode. ...

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Dimmable Warning Lights, Part 1

By Bill Adams Mentioning warning lights and National Fire Protection Association (NFPA 1901) Standard for Automotive Fire Apparatus in the same sentence might elicit emotional and occasional irrational statements from firefighters, the NFPA safety gurus (not a derogatory term), and ...

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Assembling an Apparatus Purchasing Committee

By Bill Adams Contrary to popular belief and the ramblings of pundits and commentators including myself, there is no single “best way” to assemble an apparatus purchasing committee (APC). Many so-called industry experts tout biased opinions expounding on the past ...

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Meeting the Intent of NFPA 1901

By Bill Adams During the apparatus purchasing process, National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1901, Standard for Automotive Fire Apparatus, is the accepted “bible” for fire departments and apparatus manufacturers (OEMs). Unfortunately, both can interpret it differently when there’s a claim ...

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Observing Data and Traffic Control

By Bill Adams After cruising several apparatus manufacturers’ Web sites and attending local and regional fire service trade shows, I’ve noticed many apparatus manufacturers are making modifications in the various ways they address the marketplace. Some are quite obvious while ...

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