Business, Police/Fire

Baltimore County Fire Department unveils $40 million in new apparatus

TOWSON, MD—The Baltimore County Fire Department this week unveiled a nearly $40 million investment in new, state-of-the-art fire and EMS apparatus.

A press briefing introducing the new apparatus was held on Wednesday, July 7th.  County Executive John Olszewski Jr. and Fire Chief Joanne Rund were in attendance at the event.

The new apparatus replaces existing units that have aged out of their usefulness and was purchased under the Department’s apparatus replacement schedule. Some of these units are now in service; the rest will be placed in service in the near future.

Officials say all apparatus was designed with state-of-the-art safety features specific to the type of apparatus and features the Department’s distinctive new black-over-red color scheme.

New apparatus that is ready or near ready for service now:

Bariatric medic units (3) — $350,000 each. Total: $1.05 million

Partially funded through a federal Assistance to Firefighters grant. Manufactured by Florida-based Wheeled Coach with a Freightliner chassis common to all our medics. Assigned to Towson Station #1, Franklin Station #56 and Edgemere Station #9. These units were designed for bariatric patients; they replace units that were retrofitted for bariatric needs

Medic units (22) — $350,000 each. Total: $7.7 million

Manufactured by Wheeled Coach. Medic units are the most heavily used pieces of equipment in the Fire Service. In 2020 we responded to 96,723 EMS calls (out of a total 134,442 calls for service).

Engines (16) — $740,000 each. Total: $11.84 million

Built by Pierce Manufacturing of Wisconsin. Nine of the engines hold 750 gallons of water; seven hold 1,000 gallons. All are compliant with National Fire Protection Association standards and are equipped with new hose, nozzles, air bags, and the HAAS alert system to let motorists know when active fire units are ahead. Seven have been placed in service (Pikesville, Golden Ring, Woodlawn, Perry Hall, Dundalk, Catonsville and Texas).

Tractor-drawn aerials (3) — $1.4 million each. Total: $4.2 million

Built by Pierce Manufacturing. These trucks articulate in the middle, which make them more maneuverable. The ladder reaches 107 feet high, the highest we’ve ever used. Compliant with NFPA safety standards. Equipped with upgraded rescue tools, including battery-operated saws that comply with the Administration’s “green” initiatives. Equipped with HAAS alerting system. Assigned to Halethorpe, Westview and Eastview stations.

Tower ladder truck (1) – $1.4 million

Built by Pierce Manufacturing. Assigned to the Texas station, home of our tactical rescue experts and USAR. The tower operates from the middle, rather than the rear, of the truck, which provides a tactical advantage during fire operations. Equipped with HAAS alerting system and battery-operated tools.

Rescue boats (2) — $75,000

One is a 24-foot boat that replaces an existing unit. The other is a 30-foot boat that is new to the Department. Both are assigned to the Texas station and due for delivery this fall.

Supervisor vehicles (32) – about $70,000 each. Total: $2.24 million

These are 2020 Ford Expeditions equipped with encapsulated storage for safe transport of contaminated PPE (personal protective equipment). They are assigned to battalion and deputy chiefs and EMS supervisors.

Air Units (3) — $550,000 each. Total: $1.65 million

Assigned to the Hillendale, Sparrows Point and Garrison stations. Features include improved scene lighting, ability to compress air at the scene, reducing the need to dispatch multiple air units at large-scale incidents and ability to charge portable radio batteries and SCBA batteries at large-scale incidents.


The following are scheduled for delivery in 2022:

  • Engines (6) — $760,000 each. Total: $4.56 million. These have not yet been assigned to stations.
  • Tractor-drawn aerial (1) — $1.5 million. This truck will be assigned to the Randallstown station.
  • Medic units (8) — $350,000 each. Total: $2.8 million. Two of these will be 4x4s for assignment to the Franklin and Parkton stations, which cover rural portions of the County.
  • Foam unit (1) — $750,000. This unit will be assigned to Brooklandville Station #14, home of our Hazmat unit. The new Foam Unit will be equipped with an industrial foam system.

Photo via the Baltimore County Fire Department

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