Huntington gets new Fire Rescue on second try

Huntington Fire Dept. Lt. Steve Graydon (right) stands with Bill Judd of Marcotte Ford who delivered the Huntington Fire Department’s new Rescue Truck on Friday morning. (Photo submitted)

HUNTINGTON – It took two tries for the town to get its new Fire Rescue Truck, which was approved at last June’s Annual Town Meeting and delivered to the Huntington Fire Station on Friday. The first Fire Rescue ordered was almost ready to be delivered – just waiting for lights to be mounted, when a fire occurred at Springfield Auto & Truck in December, destroying the truck.
Interim Fire Chief Joshua Ellinger said a sander parked next to it caught fire, and the intensity of the heat melted the hood of Huntington’s Fire Rescue. Then they had to start all over again.
The Fire Rescue was customized on a 2019 Ford F350 chassis purchased from Marcotte Ford. Springfield Auto mounted the body, which was custom made for the needs of the department by Highway Products in White City, Oregon. It came in at just under $90,000, the amount unanimously approved at the Town Meeting on June 4.
Ellinger, who took over as Interim Chief when longtime Chief Gary Dahill retired in January, said the truck was specified for size to fit in the fire station. He said the station is “maxed out,” with the gear inches from the backs of the trucks in the station, as are the majority of area fire stations
On Friday morning, Bill Judd of Marcotte Ford turned the keys of the new truck over to Lt. Steve Graydon at the Huntington Fire Station. Ellinger expressed his appreciation to the teams at Marcotte and Springfield Auto & Truck for taking care of the town after the first truck burned. He also thanked Graydon for all the back and forth trips and phone calls to keep the project moving along. He also thanked the truck committee, and the residents for approving the purchase.

Huntington Interim Fire Chief Joshua Ellinger. (Photo submitted)

“It’s been a long time coming. We were so very close to getting it around December; but, we’re good now,” Ellinger said.
Huntington Fire Rescue will assist in medical calls, and replaces a 2004 F-35 town highway truck that was converted into a rescue with a rescue body. It joins the department’s two engines; an attack pumper and a tank pumper.
“We are coming up to the end of life for Engine 2, the pumper tanker. It still works. We test our trucks to make sure they’re still operational. As long as it continues to pass pump testing, we can keep it in service,” Ellinger said, noting that it’s over 30 years old, which is the recommended life for a pumper. He said as each year goes by, it cost more money to repair; the reason the standard is to replace them after 30 years.
As for the permanent position of Fire Chief, Ellinger said he is a placeholder. He said the town is going to put together a hiring committee, and take applications and resumes for the position. Ellinger, who has been with the department for eleven years, said he will most likely be putting his hat in the ring.

To Top