Canyon Volunteer Firefighters Convert Military Vehicle into Multipurpose Truck

 The Canyon Volunteer Fire Department recently converted an excess military vehicle into a multipurpose firefighting truck.

The Stewart Stevenson 2.5-ton cargo truck was awarded through the Department of Defense Firefighter Property Program along with a $20,000 grant for a slip-on unit through the Rural Volunteer Fire Department Assistance Program, both programs administered through Texas A&M Forest Service.


The weight and size of this truck allows the VFD greater access to tight or less accessible areas and makes it possible to get through snow, high-water or muddy areas when an emergency arises in the VFD's 301-square-mile protection area.

"This truck is ideal for quick response and attack on grass fires," said Canyon VFD Fire Chief Mike Webb. "The local terrain is very flat in some areas but can be rocky with hills and canyons. This well maintained truck is automatic, has four-wheel-drive and will serve the department during wildland firefighting, high-water rescue or medical response."

The department did 99% of the prep-work and then had the truck painted a non-military color. The volunteers added striping, lights, radio, tool boxes and a slip-on unit with a 500-gallon water tank and a 10-gallon foam tank.


A slip-on unit is an apparatus built to meet the demands of the fire service and easily mounted in the back of a pickup truck or a custom-built platform. It can transport water to rural areas that do not have adequate water supply. The foam that is mixed with the water helps to smother the flame, coat the fuel and guards against re-igniting.

"The department has a large brush truck but with the addition of this smaller one we now have greater capability for protecting our community," said Webb. "It will especially be beneficial during mutual aid because we can use one truck to respond and still have a truck at the station to protect our own back yard."

Canyon Volunteer Fire Department has been committed to protecting the local community and surrounding area since 1908. The department has open enrollment for anyone wanting to volunteer. Applications are available all year for those individuals who would like to serve their community. The forms can be picked up at the fire station, 301 16th Street, Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.


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