By John Filonow
PERKINS, Okla. —
Payne County commissioners approved the sale of a 1987 Ford 850 from Payne County Auto Sales to the city of Perkins for $21,500 Monday.
Perkins Fire Chief Joe Barta said his department is updating its vehicle rescue response. This vehicle would have extrication equipment on it, which is referred to as the “Jaws of Life,” Barta said.
Barta said he was in the middle of the process now, and in a month to six weeks he would know more about specific changes to the department’s equipment.
The department had bought another rescue vehicle using the city of Perkins’ funds and the truck from Payne County would be used for parts to improve the truck from the city, he said.
He said lighting equipment and generators would be the main equipment the department would remove from the truck from the county, when it arrives.
Barta said it can cost $300,000 for new rescue trucks and the department doesn’t have that in its budget. The department must do what it can to update its equipment, Barta said.
Assistant Fire Chief William Hunt said the goal of updating the equipment is to increase efficiency.
With the department’s rescue vehicle, firefighters must manually start a generator and hook up a pump to get extrication equipment running, Hunt said.
Hunt said while there haven’t been problems with the equipment, increasing its efficiency would allow his crew to do patient care instead of hooking up tools.
Barta said the majority of calls the department receives involving car crashes are in the county, either on State Highway 33 East or West or North or South State Highway 177.
Hunt said the majority of crashes out on the highway are more serious than those in town.
Barta said he would be getting the rescue truck as soon as he gets a letter to the county clerk and turns in a purchase order.
He said the department would have the truck when the paperwork from his department and the county is complete.