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Mark Gregory

First Electric Firetruck in North America is in Los Angeles

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The Los Angeles City Fire Department (LAFD) announced that it is buying its first electric fire engine, which it claims will be “the first in North America.

 

LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas commented on the announcement:

I am excited that we are the first Department in North America to order this cutting-edge fire engine. The electric fire engine is an innovative tool that will help reduce noise and harmful diesel emissions while providing a flexible tool for firefighting and rescue operations from a technologically advanced platform. We are looking forward to evaluating it in a real-world environment once it hits the streets of Hollywood next year.

They placed an order with Rosenbauer, an Austrian-based fire engine manufacturer, which claims to have built “the world’s first fully electric drive fire truck.”

We reported on them earlier this year when they brought the prototype on a tour of North America to show it to some fire departments.

At the time, the Menlo Park Fire District said that it was planning to buy the truck, but it now looks like Los Angeles is beating them to it.

Rosenbauer says that its electric truck is equipped with a 350kW electric powertrain and a 100kWh battery pack, which is good for two hours of operation.

Dieter Siegel, CEO of Rosenbauer International, commented on the deal with LAFD:

 

 

 
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Edited by Mark Gregory (see edit history)

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Not knowing the specs of the truck, but I will comment on two things.

1. Just getting to a fire is only the first part of the equation. Pumping water is far more energy intensive than just showing up.

2. Noting that's it's California I'm not at all surprised. Hopefully the truck won't be based in a part of CA where the electricity is routinely shut off......Bob

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I'm all for electric vehicles - it leaves more oil for the rest of us. If I still lived in L.A., I might be concerned about this, though:

 

"Rosenbauer says that its electric truck is equipped with a 350kW electric powertrain and a 100kWh battery pack, which is good for two hours of operation."

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Looks like a rescue unit which might be a good purpose for it.  As for Engines, Pumper and Aerial trucks most departments have processes in place to refuel them on scene which says something about how long they have to be able operate.  I'm not sure that we will ever get there on batteries

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CLEAN AIR at the site of a FIRE in HOLLYWOOD goes well with the Academy Award winner worried about milk in coffee. (Drink it black, like real men) Hope nobody is hurt using that thing during the two hours of use. Bob 

Edited by 1937hd45 (see edit history)
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I know it's progress, but I'll take the 1969 Ward LaFrance I use to drive in the Fire Service.

 

Steve

 

 

steve's classics 120001.jpg

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Los Angeles has already spent hundreds of millions of dollars on a fleet of electric buses that are barely operational so most of them just sit and rot away in parking lots.

It's always easy to throw away millions of dollars on a pipe dream when it's not your money.

 

https://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-electric-buses-20180520-story.html

 

And the LAPD spent millions on electric BMWs that are hardly used.

 

https://www.foxnews.com/us/lapd-spent-millions-on-green-electric-bmws-used-for-joyrides-to-nail-salons-day-lunches-report

Edited by zepher (see edit history)

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I'm with you Steve, I'll take my companies 2000 GPM, Seagraves pumper any day. It will pump for hours on end. We are in trouble if we need to think about reducing noise and emissions in an emergency situation. It figures that it is in Los Angeles, the land of fruits and nuts. I'm all for progress but this is just just another gimmick, destined for the scrap heap in a few years. I can see it now at a large fire, "we have to shut down our hoses, we need to recharge our batteries". What's next electric army tanks?

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The 100kw battery seems oddly low considering a battery pack of that size can be found in an electric car.  Seems like the design needs some review for that aspect.  

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Clearly a large structure fire will be doused in 2 hours. Then they can tow the pumper back to the station to plug it in. OR, they can clutter the site with fossil fuel based generators to provide electricity for the rare 2.1 hour fire. There, problem solved!

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Don't overlook the first electric ambulance ride in 1901 with President McKinley, sadly it was also his last. Bob 

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That vehicle looks like either a logistics truck or a hazmat truck, and doesn't appear to have either a tanking or pumping capacity.  As previous posters have pointed out, a complex fire ground response can go on for hours. 

 

For better or worse, I'm afraid that electric vehicles are the wave of the future.  I just wish that their proponents would be a bit more honest and not promote them as being "non polluting".  It takes a lot of energy (much of it from coal-fired generating plants) to re-charge the batteries of those vehicles.  Wind and solar are not yet a significant factor in overall power generation ... maybe (hopefully) in the future.

 

Cheers,

Grog

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7 hours ago, joe_padavano said:

 ........and a 100kWh battery pack, which is good for two hours of operation."

Yeah, I don't think Boeing is wasting any R&D money in this area. 😄

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Guess the Tesla guy doesn't want the liability, otherwise he would be giving them out for free for the publicity. Bob 

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 This brings up the question, Has anyone added a modern lithium battery to an electric antique car for better performance?

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2 minutes ago, Roger Walling said:

 This brings up the question, Has anyone added a modern lithium battery to an electric antique car for better performance?

No hot rod talk on this forum. 

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6 minutes ago, gossp said:

No hot rod talk on this forum. 

I agree with you but I was commenting in a post about a 2020 fire engine! 😉

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8 minutes ago, Roger Walling said:

 This brings up the question, Has anyone added a modern lithium battery to an electric antique car for better performance?

Probably not as the controller for use and charging would have to be developed and added to the vehicle.  Deep cycle AGM batteries seem to be the update choice for antique electric vehicles.

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I served in an Engine Company for 25 years and you can call me "old school", but when my company and I were in the middle of a raging inferno, I want the sound of a Cummins or Detroit Diesel having my back.

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Naturally this is for the "Valley of Smoke" (Chumash name).

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1 hour ago, 46 woodie said:

I want the sound of a Cummins or Detroit Diesel having my back.

Exactly ! 

 

46 Woodie, our 1948 American LaFrance pumper was donated to our Engine Company back in 1969 when we established.... It came from LI..... not sure of the where about of it now....

 

Steve

 

 

steve's classics 14.jpg

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Wow, the day's of the open cab fire apparatus! Ok for Southern California, but not so good in wet or cold climates.  Before my time, sorry I can't be of any help Steve as I entered the Fire Service in 1971.

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There's an open air cab fire engine hiding in the back lot of a garage on 9W in Highland. Will see it occasionally en route from the Mid-Hudson Bridge to either Kingston or New Paltz. It's at the large garage on the right when heading north just before the 299 interchange.  I'll see if I can find a picture of it. I know I've tried to photograph it but not sure I was successful. I suspect it's operational because I've seen it in different places on the lot...it's been there about 15 years.

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