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Rockland County Gets New Fire Truck To Help Fight Hard-To-Reach Fires

CONGERS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Firefighters in Rockland County have a new tool to get where they need to be.

As CBS2's Tony Aiello reports, it's a tricked-out firetruck that can reach hot spots typical rigs cannot.

From brush fires that burn in hard-to-reach spots, to cars that get stuck on the tracks and are pushed far from the crossing where impact was made – the CSX Line that cuts through Congers is a major source of concern for first responders.

"We have a major vulnerability with the rail line here. Over the years, we've had accident after accident, problem after problem," State Sen. David Carlucci told Aiello.

Carlucci maneuvered more than 100,000 into the state budget to help pay for the mean-looking fire-fighting machine.

"With this truck, we can get up and down the tracks in a matter of minutes. People's backyards, different kinds of terrain that normal engines can't get to," he explained.

With its huge wheels and high clearance, it can reach spots regular rigs can't.

"This is the air compressor. Obviously, going through different types of terrain, you have to decrease the pressure in the tires and then you have to increase the pressure to get back on the road," said Carlucci.

On the back of the rig sits what looks like a huge box. It's a 300 gallon water tank to fight fires.

There are also buckets of foam concentrate that can be added to the water to handle chemical spills.

First responders can also run hoses from distant pumpers or hydrants to feed unlimited water to the truck.

"You have a confidence driving this truck. It's just a great truck," one responder said.

When trouble comes down the track, they'll be ready.

Under a mutual aid agreement, Congers will send the truck wherever it may be needed in Rockland County. The department also received money from CSX Railroad to purchase equipment to help with emergency responses.

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