Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

New Fire Truck Too Big for Its Home

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

New Fire Truck Too Big for Its Home

Article excerpt

Switzerland volunteer firefighter Chip Glavin likes his

station's new fire truck so much, he has been sleeping beside it

at night.

Actually, he, along with police, have been guarding the

top-of-the-line $140,000 vehicle -- because it's 12 inches too

long for the fire station garage.

This arrangement will continue until the station's garage door

is extended to accommodate the oversized pumper truck later this

month.

By December, the red truck will have a permanent new home. A

new Switzerland station is expected to open in December at the

southwest corner of Sheffield Road and Florida 13, following the

St. Johns County Commission's Jan. 28 allocation of $100,000 for

the purchase of the 2 1/2-acre site.

The new fire station will replace the existing Switzerland

station north of Worth Road.

The county has set aside $500,000 for the station construction.

For now, to shelter the exposed truck, the county planned to

begin a $1,500 project this week to extend the station's garage

door. This modification will have to do until the new station is

built, said John Bennett, the county's fire service maintenance

coordinator.

Meanwhile, as a precaution, Glavin has been sleeping on a

stretcher at night at the station. "I don't want to see it get

vandalized," said Glavin, who added he's glad to do it.

As added security, St. Johns County Sheriff's deputies have

increased nightly patrols in the area.

Fire engines outgrowing fire stations is a fairly common thing

across the country. It happens because fire engines have grown

and stations have not, said fire officials in St. Johns and

Duval counties.

Engines were made larger in the early 1980s, when firefighters,

for safety reasons, were required to ride inside fire engines,

instead of on the outside. …

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