An upgrade to the Bienfait fire department’s fleet is on the way.
The Town purchased a new fire truck on May 2, and is now awaiting its arrival in the coming weeks.
Dwight Thompson, who is the president of the committee raise funds for the new truck and a member of the Bienfait town council, said the addition is important so that the local fire department can continue to provide good service to the community.
The fundraising committee was organized early last year and fundraising efforts started about a year ago. So far they have raised $85,000. Thompson noted that they will continue to host fundraisers, as they seek to cover the final $20,000 to $30,000 cost of the truck. The town is determined to pay for the truck entirely through donations.
Town council budgeted as much as $200,000 for the new purchase, so Thompson said they are “well below” their expected range, with the purchased one sitting at about $110,000.
Thompson said the new truck “will be great for our town and community.”
He also noted the fire department has two trucks already, and with the addition of the third, he wasn’t sure if they would continue operating with all three vehicles or retire one of the older ones from service.
“Our trucks have been outdated. They’re over 40 years old,” added Thompson.
The fire service was looking in various places for a used truck, from several provinces to some places in the United States. The truck they eventually bought was from south of the border, which is where Thompson said many used trucks come from for Canadian fire departments.
With fundraising ongoing, more initiatives can be expected throughout the spring and summer, as the committee looks to cover the final purchase price.
Thompson said there was a lot of discussion between council and the fire department in the last year as to what was really needed for the town.
He said, “They needed something they would be proud to have.”
Thompson is confident that’s what the department will receive.